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. 2017 Nov;20(11):1133-1139.
doi: 10.1089/jmf.2017.0006. Epub 2017 Aug 4.

Behavioral Effect of Sterculia Apetala Seed Oil Consumption in Male Zucker Rats

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Behavioral Effect of Sterculia Apetala Seed Oil Consumption in Male Zucker Rats

Socorro Herrera-Meza et al. J Med Food. .

Abstract

Sterculia apetala (order: Malvales, family: Sterculiaceae) seed oil contains two cyclopropene fatty acids: sterculic and malvalic acid. Both positive and negative effects have been associated with the consumption of sterculic oil. In Mexico, S. apetala seeds are consumed after being boiled or roasted, used as chocolate flavoring, and utilized as animal fodder. Therefore, it is important to evaluate whether the consumption of this seed has a negative impact on the organism. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of administration of sterculic oil, during an 8-week period, on anxiety-like behavior and spontaneous locomotor activity in Zucker rats, analyzed through light/dark and open-field tests. The results showed that the consumption of sterculic oil decreased exploration latency in light/dark tests, which suggests an anxiolytic-like effect. Alterations in time spent on rearing and grooming were present in open-field tests, but this was not statistically significant, discarding nonspecific motor alterations. The alterations found in this study are possibly related to intrinsic obesity and metabolic complications present in the Zucker rat model, where leptin plays an important role in animal mood, more so than sterculic oil consumption.

Keywords: • anxiety; • cyclopropene fatty acids; • sterculic oil.

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