Effect of blueberry polyphenols on 3T3-F442A preadipocyte differentiation

J Med Food. 2012 May;15(5):448-52. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2011.0234. Epub 2012 Mar 8.


Today obesity is an epidemic, and its prevalence has increased significantly over the last few decades. To avoid excessive accumulation of fat, optimum energy intake along with regular exercise is mandatory. Polyphenols present in green tea, grape seeds, orange, and grapefruit combat adipogenesis at the molecular level and also induce lipolysis. However, very little is known regarding the role of blueberry polyphenols on adipocyte differentiation. Hence we tested the dose-dependent effects of blueberry polyphenols on mouse 3T3-F442A preadipocyte differentiation and lipolysis. 3T3-F442A preadipocytes were incubated with three doses of blueberry polyphenols (150, 200, and 250 μg/mL [BB-150, BB-200, and BB-250, respectively]), and intracellular lipid content, cell proliferation, and lipolysis were assayed. Blueberry polyphenols suppressed adipocyte differentiation determined by Oil Red-O staining and AdipoRed assay. Intracellular lipid content in control (11,385.51±1,169.6 relative fluorescence units) was significantly higher (P<.05) than with the three doses of blueberry polyphenols (8336.86±503.57, 4235.67±323.17, and 3027.97±346.61, respectively). This corresponds to a reduction of 27%, 63%, and 74%, respectively. Cell proliferation was observed to be significantly higher in the control (0.744±0.035 optical density units) than with BB-150 (0.517±0.031), BB-200 (0.491±0.023), and BB-250 (0.455±0.012). However, when tested for lipolysis, there was no significant difference observed among the groups. We conclude that blueberry polyphenols may play an effective role in inhibiting adipogenesis and cell proliferation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 3T3-L1 Cells
  • Adipocytes / drug effects*
  • Adipocytes / metabolism
  • Adipogenesis / drug effects*
  • Animals
  • Blueberry Plants / chemistry*
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Lipid Metabolism / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Obesity / metabolism
  • Obesity / prevention & control*
  • Phytotherapy
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Polyphenols / administration & dosage
  • Polyphenols / pharmacology*
  • Polyphenols / therapeutic use


  • Plant Extracts
  • Polyphenols