Concentrations of isoflavones in macaques consuming standard laboratory monkey diet

Fawn C Stroud, Susan E Appt, Mark E Wilson, Adrian A Franke, Michael R Adams, Jay R Kaplan
Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science: JAALAS 2006, 45 (4): 20-3
The soy isoflavones genistein and daidzein, as well as the daidzein metabolite equol, have structural similarities to mammalian estrogens and bind with varying affinity to both known subtypes of the estrogen receptor. Consequently, prospective studies in both humans and animals have begun to evaluate the potential effects of isoflavones on estrogen receptor-mediated phenomena. However, many diets of laboratory-housed animals derive their protein from soy and thus likely contain substantial quantities of isoflavones. Exposing experimental subjects to these isoflavones via such diets could confound studies, particularly those evaluating the effects of estrogen or estrogen-like ligands. The aim of this study was to compare the levels of circulating concentrations of isoflavones and their metabolites in monkeys fed either a soy-free diet, a soy-based diet providing 130 mg of isoflavone (daidzein, genistein, and glycitein aglycon equivalents) daily, or a commercially available 'chow' diet containing an unspecified amount of soybean meal. Animals consuming the commercial diet had serum concentrations of daidzein, genistein, and glycitein that were significantly higher than those of animals fed a soy-free diet but similar to those of monkeys fed a soybased diet formulated to be high in isoflavones. Notably, animals fed the commercial diet also had serum equol concentrations that were similar to or, in some cases, in excess of serum concentrations in the animals fed the soy diet. These data argue for the use of soy-free diets in studies investigating estrogenic effects on physiologic or behavioral endpoints.

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