Gamma-oryzanol has benefits in the treatment of cardiovascular disease. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Oryzanol decreases cholesterol absorption and aortic fatty streaks in hamsters.
Lipids. 1997 Mar;32(3):303-9. PMID: 9076667
"Oryzanol is a class of nonsaponifiable lipids of rice bran oil (RBO). More specifically, oryzanol is a group of ferulic acid esters of triterpene alcohol and plant sterols. In experiment 1, the mechanisms of the cholesterol-lowering action of oryzanol were investigated in 32 hamsters made hypercholesterolemic by feeding chow-based diets containing 5% coconut oil and 0.1% cholesterol with or without 1% oryzanol for 7 wk. Relative to the control animals, oryzanol treatment resulted in a significant reduction in plasma total cholesterol (TC) (28%, P < 0.01) and the sum of IDL-C, LDL-C, and VLDL-C (NON-HDL-C) (34%, P < 0.01). In addition, the oryzanol-treated animals also exhibited a 25% reduction in percent cholesterol absorption vs. control animals. Endogenous cholesterol synthesis, as measured by the liver and intestinal HMG-CoA reductase activities, showed no difference between the two groups. To determine whether a lower dose of oryzanol was also efficacious and to measure aortic fatty streaks, 19 hamsters in experiment 2 were divided into two groups and fed for 10 wk chow-based diets containing 0.05% cholesterol and 10% coconut oil (w/w) (control) and the control diet plus 0.5% oryzanol (oryzanol). Relative to the control, oryzanol-treated hamsters had reduced plasma TC (44%, P < 0.001), NON-HDL-C (57%, P < 0.01), and triglyceride (TG) (46%, P < 0.05) concentrations. Despite a 12% decrease in high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) (P < 0.01), the oryzanol-treated animals maintained a more optimum NON-HDL-C/HDL-C profile (1.1 +/- 0.4) than the control (2.5 +/- 1.4; P < 0.0075). Aortic fatty streak formation, so defined by the degree of accumulation of Oil Red O-stained macrophage-derived foam cells, was reduced 67% (P < 0.01) in the oryzanol-treated animals. From these studies, it is concluded that a constituent of the non-saponifiable lipids of RBO, oryzanol, is at least partially responsible for the cholesterol-lowering action of RBO. In addition, the cholesterol-lowering action of oryzanol was associated with significant reductions in aortic fatty streak formation.