Angelica keiskei koidzumi (ashitaba) is consumed as a traditional folk medicine and health food in Japan. Ashitaba extract contains abundant flavonoids containing chalcones. Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) is the primary physiological inhibitor of tissue plasminogen activator. Excessive amounts of PAI-1 in plasma disrupt the fibrinolytic balance and promote a prothrombotic state with which thrombosis and cardiovascular diseases are associated. In the present study, we investigated the effects of ashitaba yellow exudate (AE) on enhanced PAI-1 levels in Tsumura Suzuki obese diabetic (TSOD) mice. AE significantly decreased food efficiency and plasma PAI-1 in TSOD mice but did not affect lean control Tsumura Suzuki nonobese (TSNO) mice. AE also decreased some parameters in the plasma, such as glucose, insulin, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and gains in body weight, subcutaneous, mesenteric fat weight in TSOD mice but had little effect on these parameters in TSNO mice. Levels of adipose PAI-1 were significantly higher in TSOD than in TSNO mice. Major sources of plasma PAI-1 are thought to be adipose tissue and liver. AE significantly suppressed PAI-1 protein levels in the livers of both TSOD and TSNO mice. These results suggest that AE decreased plasma PAI-1 levels by suppressing both the adipose tissue retention of PAI-1 protein and liver PAI-1 production in TSOD mice. Supplementing the diet with AE might help to prevent thrombotic diseases or alleviate the risk of thrombotic diseases as well as to suppress metabolic state in obese individuals.
Keywords: adipose; ashitaba; chalcone; diabetes; inflammation; obese mouse; plasminogen activator inhibitor-1; thrombosis.