Shiitake (Lentinula edodes) extract, eritadenine, has been shown to reduce cholesterol levels, and its hypocholesterolemic actions are involved in the metabolism of methionine. However, the mechanisms by which eritadenine affects cholesterol metabolism in animals fed a high-fat diet containing different sources of lipids have not yet been elucidated in detail. This study was conducted to investigate the effects of shiitake supplementation on serum lipid concentrations in rats fed a diet including a high amount of a plant oil (HO [high oil] and HOS [high oil with shiitake] groups), animal fat (HF [high fat] and HFS [high fat with shiitake] groups), or MCT- (medium-chain triglyceride-) rich plant oil (HM [high MCT] and HMS [high MCT with shiitake] groups). Rats in the HOS, HFS, and HMS groups were fed shiitake. When rats were fed a diet containing shiitake, serum triglyceride, cholesterol levels, and LCAT (lecithin-cholesterol acyltransferase) activities were lower in rats given MCT-rich plant oil than in those that consumed lard. The lipid type in the diet with shiitake also affected serum cholesterol levels and LCAT activities. The diet containing MCT-rich plant oil showed the greatest rates of decrease in all serum lipid profiles and LCAT activities. These results suggest that shiitake and MCT-rich plant oil work together to reduce lipid profiles and LCAT activity in serum.
Keywords: LCAT (lecithin-cholesterol acyltransferase) activity; MCT- (medium-chain triglyceride–) rich plant oil; cholesterol; shiitake (); triglyceride.