Aspalathin, a C-glucosyl dihydrochalcone from rooibos improves the hypoglycemic potential of metformin in type 2 diabetic (db/db) mice.
Physiol Res. 2018 Nov 14 ;67(5):813-818. Epub 2018 Jul 25. PMID: 30044119
P V Dludla
Metformin is the first line therapy of type 2 diabetics, but continued reduction of their life expectancy warrants further investigation into alternative treatment strategies. This study reports on the combinational use of metformin with aspalathin, a C-glucosyl dihydrochalcone with known glucose lowering and antioxidant properties, as an effective hypoglycemic therapy in a type 2 diabetic (db/db) mouse model. When tested as a monotherapy, a low dose of aspalathin (13 mg/kg) showed no effect, while a high dose (130 mg/kg) has already displayed a better potential than metformin in protecting against diabetes associated symptoms in db/db mice. Thus, it remains of interest to determine whether this dihydrochalcone can improve the efficacy of metformin. The results showed that this combination therapy was more effective than the use of metformin as a monotherapy in ameliorating diabetes associated symptoms, including abnormal raised fasting plasma glucose levels, impaired glucose tolerance, as well as excessively increased body weights and fat content. The treated mice also had reduced food and water consumption when compared to untreated controls, with a pronounced effect evident in the last week of treatment. Therefore, this study supports further investigations into the ameliorative effect of combination therapy of metformin and aspalathin against diabetes associated symptoms.