Abstract Title:

The herbal extract ALS-L1023 from Melissa officinalis reduces weight gain, elevated glucose levels andβ-cell loss in Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima fatty rats.

Abstract Source:

J Ethnopharmacol. 2021 Jan 10 ;264:113360. Epub 2020 Sep 9. PMID: 32918993

Abstract Author(s):

Yujin Shin, Dongju Lee, Jiwon Ahn, Mijeong Lee, Soon Shik Shin, Michung Yoon

Article Affiliation:

Yujin Shin


ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Melissa officinalis L. (Labiatae; lemon balm) is a traditional medicinal plant with hypoglycemic and hypolipidemic effects; however, how it imparts its beneficial effects remains unclear. We thus hypothesized that the herbal extract ALS-L1023, isolated from Melissa officinalis, inhibits obesity and diabetes, and tested our hypothesis using Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima fatty (OLETF) rats, which are an established animal model of type 2 diabetes.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this study, 28-week-old OLETF rats were fed a high-fat diet for 4 weeks to induce a marked impairment of the insulin response and were treated with or without ALS-L1023. Subsequently, the variables and determinants of glucose metabolism and pancreatic function were assessed via blood analysis, histology, immunohistochemistry, and real-time polymerase chain reaction.

RESULTS: The administration of ALS-L1023 resulted in a weight reduction without changes in food intake. It also markedly inhibited hyperglycemia and hypoinsulinemia, and restoredβ-cell mass that was severely impaired in OLETF rats. There was a decrease in lipid accumulation in the liver and skeletal muscle of the obese rats after treatment with ALS-L1023. Concomitantly, there was an increase in the expression levels of fatty acid-oxidizing enzymes (AMPKα2, ACOX, MCAD, andVLCAD) in the liver and skeletal muscle after ALS-L1023 treatment. Furthermore, ALS-L1023 attenuated the pancreatic inflammation including the infiltration of CD68-positive macrophages and mast cells, in addition to attenuating the expression of inflammatory factors (IL-6 and CD68).

CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that treatment with ALS-L1023 may reduce weight gain, elevated glucose levels, andβ-cell loss, by changing the expression of fatty acid-oxidizing enzymes in the liver and skeletal muscle, including inflammatory factors in the pancreas. These findings indicate that ALS-L1023 may be an effective therapeutic strategy to treat human obesity and type 2 diabetes.

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