Background: Obesity is a tremendous public health problem, characterized by ectopic deposition of fat into non-adipose tissues as liver generating an oxidative stress that could lead to steato-hepatitis. Grape seed and skin extract (GSSE) is a complex mixture of polyphenolics exhibiting robust antioxidative properties.
Aim: We hypothesize that GSSE could protect the liver from fat-induced lipotoxicity and have a beneficial effect on liver function.
Methods: Hepatoprotective effect of GSSE was measured by using an experimental model of fat-induced rat liver steatosis. Male rats were fed a standard diet or a high-fat diet (HFD) during 6 weeks and treated or not with 500 mg/kg bw GSSE. Lipid deposition into the liver was assessed by triglyceride, cholesterol and phospholipid measurements. Fat-induced lipoperoxidation, carbonylation, depletion of glutathione and of antioxidant enzyme activities were used as oxidative stress markers with a special emphasis on transition metal distribution.
Results: HFD induced liver hypertrophy and inflammation as assessed by high liver transaminases. HFD also induced an oxidative stress characterized by increased lipid and protein oxidation, a drop in glutathione and antioxidant enzyme activities as glutathione peroxidase and superoxide dismutase and a drastic depletion in liver zinc. Importantly, GSSE prevented all the deleterious effects of HFD treatment.
Conclusions: Data suggest that GSSE could be used as a safe preventive agent against fat-induced liver lipotoxicity which could also have potential applications in other non-alcoholic liver diseases.