Lemon Balm Extract and Its Major Chemical Compound, Rosmarinic Acid, Alleviate Damages of Liver in an Animal Model of Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) (P06-093-19).
Curr Dev Nutr. 2019 Jun ;3(Suppl 1). Epub 2019 Jun 13. PMID: 31223844
Objectives: The non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) comprises the broad histopathological states of liver, that ranging from asymptomatic hepatic steatosis to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and liver cirrhosis. In some studies, they suppose that almost 25-30% of world population is underlying NAFLD. Lemon balm () is the herb that has some traditional medicinal usages. Also rosmarinic acid (RA; O-caffeoyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl lactic acid), the major chemical compound of lemon balm, already reported that it has the potency on anti-obesity and -inflammatory. Hence, we evaluate the whether lemon balm extract (LBE) and RA could suppress the pathogenesis of NASH using anandmodel.
Methods: model: The palmitic acid (PA) exposed HepG2 hepatocellular carcinoma cells can imitate the lipid accumulation in hepatocytes. PA exposed HepG2 cells were exposed with or without LBE or RA.model: The methionine- and choline-deficient (MCD) diet fed db/db C57BL/6 J mice model was used. This model is known as it can mimic well symptoms of human NAFLD. The LBE or RA were treated by oral gavage.
Results: With the MCD diet only, the severe liver damage was caused by progression of NASH in animal model. LBE and RA treatments alleviated the oxidative stress in the MCD diet-fed db/db mice and PA-exposed HepG2 cells by increasing the expression of antioxidant enzymes (NRF2, SOD) and augmented lipolysis-related gene (PPARα, PGC-1α, CPT-1 L) expression. In addition, LBE and RA treatments inhibited the expression of genes involved in hepatic fibrosis (α-SMA, COL1A1) and fatty acid synthesis (SREBP-1c, CPT-1 L) and activated AMP-activated protein kinaseand. Also, the histopathological results were ameliorated by treatment of LBE or RA.
Conclusions: LBE and RA modulate lipid metabolism via AMPK activation and suppress inflammation via changes in NRF2 and NF-κB signalling. Importantly, the extract of lemon balm obtained with 20% EtOH showed effectiveness similar to that of RA at high concentrations. Therefore, LBE may be a good candidate for the treatment and prevention of NASH.
Funding Sources: This work was supported by the National Research Council of Science&Technology (NST) funded by the Korea Government (MSIP) (grant No. CRC-15-01-KIST).
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