The anti-obesity effect of Taheebo (Tabebuia avellanedae Lorentz ex Griseb) extract in ovariectomized mice and the identification of a potential anti-obesity compound

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2016 Sep 23;478(3):1136-40. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2016.08.081. Epub 2016 Aug 15.


Estrogen deficiency-induced obesity has a high risk of visceral fat accumulation and body weight gain. It is also associated with many adverse health conditions. Taheebo extract from Tabebuia avellanedae has been recognized as playing several biological and pharmacological roles. Therefore, we investigated whether the intake of n-BuOH extract of Taheebo shows anti-obesity effect in ovariectomized (OVX) mice. After 16 weeks of feeding, the mice administrated with 0.5% n-BuOH extract of Taheebo showed significantly decreased body weight compared with that of the control mice, and the fat mass also showed a significant decrease. In 3T3-L1 cells, supplementation with n-BuOH extract of Taheebo significantly reduced the triglyceride (TG) levels. Furthermore, bioassay-guided purification of the n-BuOH extract based on the TG levels in 3T3-L1 cells led to the isolation of compound 2 (1-dehydroxy-3,4-dihydroaucubigenin). These results suggested that the anti-obesity effect of Taheebo extract is due to its capability in preventing the accumulation of adipocyte in mice. Taheebo extract might be a promising functional food resources capable of protecting against OVX-induced obesity.

Keywords: 1-dehydroxy-3,4-dihydroaucubigenin; Anti-obesity; Ovariectomized mice; Tabebuia avellanedae Lorentz ex Griseb.

MeSH terms

  • 1-Butanol / chemistry
  • 3T3-L1 Cells
  • Animals
  • Anti-Obesity Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Obesity Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Feces / chemistry
  • Female
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Obesity / blood
  • Obesity / drug therapy*
  • Organ Size / drug effects
  • Ovariectomy
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / isolation & purification
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Tabebuia / chemistry*
  • Triglycerides / metabolism


  • Anti-Obesity Agents
  • Plant Extracts
  • Taheebo
  • Triglycerides
  • 1-Butanol