Oxidative stress and inflammation in hypertrophied adipose tissue with excessive fat accumulation play a crucial role in the development of obesity and accompanying metabolic dysfunctions. This study demonstrated the capacity of elderberry fruit (EDB) extract to decrease the elevated production of reactive oxygen species in hypertrophied 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Treatment with the EDB extract resulted in modulation of mRNA expression and protein secretion of key adipokines in hypertrophied adipocytes. Expression of leptin and adiponectin was, respectively, down- and up-regulated. Moreover, glucose uptake stimulation was noticed in mature adipocytes, both sensitive to insulin and insulin resistant. This may suggest a positive effect of EDB extract on insulin resistance status. The extract was also found to alleviate the inflammatory response in activated RAW 264.7 macrophages by down-regulating the expression of proinflammatory genes (TNF-α, IL-6, COX-2, iNOS) and suppressing the enhanced production of inflammatory mediators (TNF-α, IL-6, PGE2, NO). In vitro experiments showed that the EDB extract could inhibit digestive enzymes, including α-amylase, α-glucosidase, and pancreatic lipase, leading to reduced intestinal absorption of dietary lipids and carbohydrates. Further in vivo studies could be postulated to support EDB as a functional food component for the prevention and treatment of obesity and metabolic-immune comorbidities.
Keywords: adipokines; digestive enzymes; elderberry polyphenols; fat cells; functional food; glucose uptake; immune-metabolic effects; intracellular reactive oxygen species; obesity.