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Synergistic effect of phytochemicals on cholesterol metabolism and lipid accumulation in HepG2 cells
- Leng, Ennian, Xiao, Yuan, Mo, Zhentao, Li, Yiqi, Zhang, Yueyue, Deng, Xiaosi, Zhou, Min, Zhou, Chaochao, He, Zengxuan, He, Jingyi, Xiao, Lu, Li, Junming, Li, Wenna
- BMC complementary and alternative medicine 2018 v.18 no.1 pp. 122
- ABC transporters, AMP-activated protein kinase, alternative medicine, chlorogenic acid, cholesterol, cholesterol 7alpha-monooxygenase, cholesterol metabolism, gene expression, hepatoma, human cell lines, humans, hyperlipidemia, immunocytochemistry, lipemic effect, liver, messenger RNA, phytopharmaceuticals, protein synthesis, quercetin, reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, staining, synergism, triacylglycerols
- BACKGROUND: Crocin (CRO), chlorogenic acid (CGA), geniposide (GEN), and quercetin (QUE) are all natural compounds with anti-obesity properties, in particular, hypolipidemic effects, which have been widely used for the treatment of obesity-related metabolic diseases. However, it is not yet known whether these compounds interact synergistically. Here, we investigated the effects and molecular mechanisms of CRO, CGA, GEN, QUE, and a combination of all four compounds (CCGQ), on lipid accumulation in human hepatoma (HepG2 cells). METHODS: The optimal concentration of CRO, CGA, GEN, QUE to stimulate HepG2 cells proliferation was determined using MTT assay. HepG2 cells were pretreated with 10 μmol/L simvastatin, 1 μmol/L CRO, 30 μmol/L CGA, 10 μmol/L GEN, 10 μmol/L QUE, and CCGQ (a combination of 1 μmol/L CRO, 30 μmol/L CGA, 10 μmol/L GEN, and 10 μmol/L QUE) for 24 or 48 h. Oil red O staining and extracellular TC and TG levels were detected. The RT-PCR was used to observe on cholesterol metabolism-related gene expression. Immunocytochemistry and western-blot assayed the 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme (HMGCR) protein expression in HepG2 cells. RESULTS: Compared to those of control, we demonstrated that treating HepG2 cells for 48 h with CCGQ resulted in a strong synergistic effect, causing a marked decrease in lipid deposition in comparison to individual treatments, in both triglyceride and total cholesterol (CRO, 5.74- and 1.49-folds; CGA, 3.38- and 1.12-folds; GEN, 4.04- and 1.44-folds; QUE, 3.36- and 1.24-folds; simvastatin, 5.49- and 1.83-folds; and CCGQ, 7.75- and 2.20-folds), and Oil red O staining assays. In addition, CCGQ treatment increased ATP-binding cassette transporter (ABCA1), cholesterol 7α-hydroxylase (CYP7A1), and AMP-activated protein kinase 2α (AMPKα2) mRNA expression, while decreasing sterol regulatory element binding protein 2 (SREBP2), and liver X receptor alpha (LXRα) mRNA expression. Notably, CCGQ was more effective in decreasing HMGCR expression than the individual treatments. CONCLUSION: The CCGQ combination has potential, both as a complementary therapy for hyperlipemia, and in preventing further obesity-related complications.