Dietary lupin protein lowers triglyceride concentrations in liver and plasma in rats by reducing hepatic gene expression of sterol regulatory element-binding protein-1c

Julia Spielmann, Anjali Shukla, Corinna Brandsch, Frank Hirche, Gabriele I Stangl, Klaus Eder
Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism 2007, 51 (4): 387-92

BACKGROUND: Recently, it has been shown that dietary lupin protein lowers plasma triglyceride concentrations in rats. In this study, we investigated the hypothesis that this effect is due to a downregulation of sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP)-1c, a transcription factor that regulates the expression of lipogenic enzymes in the livers of rats.

METHODS: Two groups of 12 rats each were fed semisynthetic diets containing 200 g/kg of either casein (control group) or lupin protein from Lupinus albus for 22 days.

RESULTS: Rats fed the diet containing lupin protein had lower concentrations of triglycerides in the liver, plasma and VLDL + chylomicrons (p < 0.05). The concentration of protein in VLDL + chylomicrons was also lower in rats fed lupin protein than in rats fed casein (p < 0.05). The mRNA concentrations of SREBP-1c and fatty acid synthase in the liver were lower in rats fed lupin protein than in rats fed casein (p < 0.05). The mRNA concentrations of lipoprotein lipase in the liver did not differ between both groups of rats.

CONCLUSION: This study confirms that a protein isolated from L. albus is strongly hypotriglyceridemic in rats. It is shown for the first time that this effect is at least in part due to a downregulation of SREBP-1c in the liver which in turn leads to a reduction in hepatic fatty acid synthesis.

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