Berberine is known to inhibit the differentiation of 3T3-L1 cells in vitro, improve glycemic control, and attenuate dyslipidemia in clinical study. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of berberine on preadipocytes isolated from human omental fat and in metabolic syndrome patients treated with berberine for 3 months. We have shown that treatment with 10 μM berberine resulted in a major inhibition of human preadipocyte differentiation and leptin and adiponectin secretion accompanied by downregulation of PPARγ2, C/EBPα, adiponectin, and leptin mRNA expression. After 3 months of treatment, metabolic syndrome patients showed decrease in their BMI (31.5 ± 3.6 versus 27.4 ± 2.4 kg/m(2)) and leptin levels (8.01 versus 5.12 μg/L), as well as leptin/adiponectin ratio and HOMA-IR. These results suggest that berberine improves insulin sensitivity by inhibiting fat store and adjusting adipokine profile in human preadipocytes and metabolic syndrome patients.