Astaxanthin protects -cells against glucose toxicity in diabetic db/db mice
Source: Redox Report, Volume 7, Number 5, October 2002 , pp. 290-293(4)
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Abstract:Oxidative stress induced by hyperglycemia possibly causes the dysfunction of pancreatic -cells and various forms of tissue damage in patients with diabetes mellitus. Astaxanthin, a carotenoid of marine microalgae, is reported as a strong anti-oxidant inhibiting lipid peroxidation and scavenging reactive oxygen species. The aim of the present study was to examine whether astaxanthin can elicit beneficial effects on the progressive destruction of pancreatic -cells in db/db mice - a well-known obese model of type 2 diabetes. We used diabetic C57BL/KsJ-db/db mice and db/m for the control. Astaxanthin treatment was started at 6 weeks of age and its effects were evaluated at 10, 14, and 18 weeks of age by non-fasting blood glucose levels, intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test including insulin secretion, and -cell histology. The non-fasting blood glucose level in db/db mice was significantly higher than that of db/m mice, and the higher level of blood glucose in db/db mice was significantly decreased after treatment with astaxanthin. The ability of islet cells to secrete insulin, as determined by the intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test, was preserved in the astaxanthin-treated group. Histology of the pancreas revealed no significant differences in the -cell mass between astaxanthin-treated and -untreated db/db mice. In conclusion, these results indicate that astaxanthin can exert beneficial effects in diabetes, with preservation of -cell function. This finding suggests that anti-oxidants may be potentially useful for reducing glucose toxicity.
Document Type: Regular Paper
Publication date: 2002-10-01