Effects of black adzuki bean (Vigna angularis, Geomguseul) extract on body composition and hypothalamic neuropeptide expression in rats fed a high-fat diet

Food Nutr Res. 2015 Oct 21:59:27719. doi: 10.3402/fnr.v59.27719. eCollection 2015.


Background: Obesity is often considered to result from either excessive food intake or insufficient physical activity. Adzuki beans have been evaluated as potential remedies for various health conditions, and recent studies have reported their effects on the regulation of lipid metabolism, but it remains to be determined whether they may be effective in overcoming obesity by regulating appetite and satiety.

Objective: This study investigated the effect of black adzuki bean (BAB) extract on body composition and hypothalamic neuropeptide expression in Sprague Dawley rats (Rattus norvegicus) fed a high-fat diet.

Design: The rats were fed for 8 weeks with a control diet containing 10 kcal% from fat (CD), a high-fat diet containing 60 kcal% from fat (HD), or a high-fat diet with 1% or 2% freeze-dried ethanolic extract powder of BAB (BAB-1 and BAB-2).

Results: The body weights and epididymal fat weights were significantly reduced and the serum lipid profiles were improved in the group fed the diet containing BAB compared to the HD group. The expression of AGRP mRNA significantly decreased in the BAB groups, and treatment with BAB-2 resulted in a marked induction of the mRNA expression of POMC and CART, which are anorexigenic neuropeptides that suppress food intake. Furthermore, mRNA expression levels of ObRb, a gene related to leptin sensitivity in the hypothalamus, were significantly higher in the BAB groups than in the HD group.

Conclusions: These results suggest that supplementation with BAB has a significant effect on body weight via regulation of hypothalamic neuropeptides.

Keywords: AGRP; CART; ObRb; POMC; Vigna angularis; hyperlipidemia; hypothalamic neuropeptides; obesity.