Does propolis have any effect on non-alcoholic fatty liver disease?

Biomed Pharmacother. 2017 Jun:90:863-871. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2017.04.062. Epub 2017 Apr 21.


The aim of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effect of propolis on non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in rats. The rats were randomly divided into 3 groups of 10 as the NAFLD, NAFLD+100 and NAFLD+200 groups. The rats were fed with a fatty diet (25g/kg/day) to provoke NAFLD. Then after the formation of fatty liver, a standard diet (SD) (25g/kg/day) was given to the NAFLD group and the other two groups were fed with SD and 100mg/kg (NAFLD+100 Group) or 200mg/kg propolis (NAFLD+200 Group) for two weeks. At the end of two weeks the animals were sacrificed. Blood and tissue samples were taken for biochemical and histopathological evaluations. The propolis-treated groups had better results in serum lipids (total cholesterol, non-HDL cholesterol, triglyceride), ALT, and ALP values. When compared with the NAFLD group, IL-6 and TNF-α values decreased in the NAFLD+100 and NAFLD+200 groups. The administration of propolis to the rats significantly reduced serum and tissue MDA and GPX values and increased SH in serum when compared with the NAFLD group. No difference was determined between the groups treated with two different doses of propolis in respect of biochemical values. When the mean histological scores of the groups were compared, statistically significant differences were found between the NAFLD group and the propolis-treated groups. No difference was determined between the groups treated with the two different doses of propolis in respect of histopathological results. Propolis had positive effects on histopathological and biochemical parameters of NAFLD and these effects were related to the anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of propolis.

Keywords: Fatty diet; Histopathology; Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD); Oxidative stress; Propolis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Diet, High-Fat / adverse effects
  • Interleukin-6 / metabolism
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / blood
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / drug therapy*
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / metabolism
  • Propolis / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Triglycerides / blood
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / metabolism


  • Interleukin-6
  • Triglycerides
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Propolis
  • Cholesterol