Long-term Effect of Medium-Chain Triglyceride on Hepatic Enzymes Catalyzing Lipogenesis and Cholesterogenesis in Rats

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 1977;23(1):43-51. doi: 10.3177/jnsv.23.43.


This study was conducted to investigate the long-term effect of dietary medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) as compared with that of corn oil feeding on lipid metabolism in rats. Both serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels in MCT-fed rats showed significant decrease during the experimental period of eight weeks, although liver cholesterol and triglyceride contents were not distinguishable between the two groups. Significant elevation of the activity of lipogenic enzymes, such as fatty acid synthetase (FAS) and malic enzyme (ME) of the liver, was observed in MCT-fed rats without any fat accumulation of the liver (fatty liver). The increase of lipogenic enzyme activity was accompanied by a significant reduction of essential fatty acids (EFA) such as 18:2 (omega6) and 20:4 (omega6) in total liver lipid. In contrast, hepatic beta-hydroxy-beta-methylglutaryl CoA(HMG-CoA) reductase activity was significantly decreased in MCT-fed rats, that would play an important role in achieving hypocholesterolemia. From these results obtained in a long-term experiment, it is concluded that exogenous MCT depresses the key enzyme catalyzing cholesterol synthesis with a concomitant elevation of lipogenic enzyme activity in the rat liver.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cholesterol / biosynthesis*
  • Dietary Fats
  • Fatty Acid Synthases / metabolism
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl CoA Reductases / metabolism
  • Lipids / biosynthesis*
  • Liver / enzymology*
  • Malate Dehydrogenase / metabolism
  • Male
  • Oils
  • Rats
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Triglycerides / metabolism
  • Triglycerides / pharmacology*
  • Zea mays


  • Dietary Fats
  • Lipids
  • Oils
  • Triglycerides
  • Cholesterol
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl CoA Reductases
  • Malate Dehydrogenase
  • Fatty Acid Synthases