Anti-diabetic effects of puerarin, isolated from Pueraria lobata (Willd.), on streptozotocin-diabetogenic mice through promoting insulin expression and ameliorating metabolic function

Food Chem Toxicol. 2013 Oct;60:341-7. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2013.07.077. Epub 2013 Aug 6.


Diabetes is a chronic disease characterized by the metabolic disorder in specific tissues. Our present study was designed to assess the potential benefits of puerarin (PR) on hypoglycemic and hypolipemic effects in diabetic mice induced by streptozotocin (STZ). The results achieved from these experiments showed that glycemia in STZ-diabetogenic mice were significantly reduced following the PR administration, while serum insulin concentration was increased. In addition, PR contributed to improving the dyslipidemia conditions. Histopathological examination indicated that the STZ-lesioned pancreas tissue in PR-administrated mice was effectively alleviated. Meanwhile, intrapancreatic protein levels of insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1) and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) were up-regulated, respectively. On the other hand, endogenous mRNA levels of skeletal muscle insulin receptor (InsR) and peroxisome proliferators-activated receptor α (PPARα) were increased after administration of PR. Taken together, these findings reveal that puerarin effectively exerts the hypoglycemic and hypolipemic roles, which its potential anti-diabetic activity is associated with elevating insulin expression and maintaining metabolic homoeostasis in STZ-diabetogenic mice.

Keywords: Diabetes; FBG; FNS; Glycemia; ISI; Insulin; Metabolism; Puerarin; fasting blood-glucose; fasting serum insulin; insulin sensitivity index.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Body Weight
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental / drug therapy*
  • Fasting
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Insulin / blood
  • Insulin Receptor Substrate Proteins / genetics
  • Insulin Receptor Substrate Proteins / metabolism
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / genetics
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / metabolism
  • Isoflavones / pharmacology*
  • Lipid Metabolism / drug effects
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
  • Muscle, Skeletal / drug effects
  • PPAR alpha / genetics
  • PPAR alpha / metabolism
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Pueraria / chemistry*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Triglycerides / blood
  • Up-Regulation


  • Blood Glucose
  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Insulin
  • Insulin Receptor Substrate Proteins
  • Irs1 protein, mouse
  • Isoflavones
  • PPAR alpha
  • Plant Extracts
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Triglycerides
  • insulin-like growth factor-1, mouse
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • puerarin