Functional Effects of the Buckwheat Iminosugar d-Fagomine on Rats with Diet-Induced Prediabetes

Mol Nutr Food Res. 2018 Aug;62(16):e1800373. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201800373. Epub 2018 Aug 1.


Scope: The goals of this work are to test if d-fagomine, an iminosugar that reduces body weight gain, can delay the appearance of a fat-induced prediabetic state in a rat model and to explore possible mechanisms behind its functional action.

Methods and results: Wistar Kyoto rats were fed a high-fat diet supplemented with d-fagomine (or not, for comparison) or a standard diet (controls) for 24 weeks. The variables measured were fasting blood glucose and insulin levels; glucose tolerance; diacylglycerols as intracellular mediators of insulin resistance in adipose tissue (AT), liver, and muscle; inflammation markers (plasma IL-6 and leptin, and liver and AT histology markers); eicosanoids from arachidonic acid as lipid mediators of inflammation; and the populations of Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, Enterobacteriales, and Bifidobacteriales in feces. It was found that d-fagomine reduces fat-induced impaired glucose tolerance, inflammation markers, and mediators (hepatic microgranulomas and lobular inflammation, plasma IL-6, prostaglandin E2 , and leukotriene B4 ) while attenuating the changes in the populations of Enterobacteriales and Bifidobacteriales.

Conclusion: d-Fagomine delays the development of a fat-induced prediabetic state in rats by reducing low-grade inflammation. We suggest that the anti-inflammatory effect of d-fagomine may be linked to a reduction in fat-induced overpopulation of minor gut bacteria.

Keywords: diabetes; iminocyclitol; iminosugars; inflammation; microbiota; obesity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism
  • Adipose Tissue / pathology
  • Animals
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Body Weight
  • Diet, High-Fat
  • Fagopyrum / chemistry*
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome
  • Imino Pyranoses / administration & dosage
  • Imino Pyranoses / pharmacology*
  • Inflammation / prevention & control
  • Insulin / blood
  • Lipids / blood
  • Male
  • Prediabetic State / prevention & control*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred WKY


  • Blood Glucose
  • Imino Pyranoses
  • Insulin
  • Lipids
  • fagomine