Flavonoids extracted from mulberry (Morus alba L.) leaf improve skeletal muscle mitochondrial function by activating AMPK in type 2 diabetes.
J Ethnopharmacol. 2019 Oct 19:112326. Epub 2019 Oct 19. PMID: 31639486
ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Mulberry (Morus alba L.) leaves have been widely applied to controlling blood glucose as an efficacious traditional Chinese medicine or salutary medical supplement. The extracts of mulberry leaf suppress inflammatory mediators and oxidative stress, protect the pancreaticβ-cells and modulate glucose metabolism in diabetic rats. Our previous studies and others have shown that mulberry leaf extract has excellent therapeutic effects on type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), however, the underlying mechanism remains to be studied.
AIM OF THE STUDY: Skeletal muscle insulin resistance (IR) plays an important role in the pathogenesis of T2DM. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects and mechanisms of Mulberry leaf flavonoids (MLF) in L6 skeletal muscle cells and db/db mice.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: L6 skeletal muscle cells were cultured and treated with/without MLF for in vitro studies. For in vivo studies, the db/db mice with/without MLF therapy were used.
RESULTS: MLF and metformin significantly ameliorated muscle glucose uptake and mitochondrial function in L6 muscle cells. MLF also increased the phosphorylation of AMPK and the expression of PGC-1α, and upregulated the protein levels of m-GLUT4 and T-GLUT4. These effects were reversed by the AMPK inhibitor compound C. In db/db mice, MLF improve diabetes symptoms and insulin resistance. Moreover, MLF elevated the levels of p-AMPK and PGC-1α, raised m-GLUT4 and T-GLUT4 protein expression, and ameliorated mitochondrial function in skeletal muscle of db/db mice.
CONCLUSIONS: MLF significantly improved skeletal muscle insulin resistance and mitochondrial function in db/db mice and L6 myocytes through AMPK-PGC-1α signaling pathway, and our findings support the therapeutic effects of MLF on type 2 diabetes.