Mushrooms on Lipid Metabolism

August 31/Sendai, Japan/Obesity, Fitness & Wellness Week -- "The effects of dietary Yamabushitake mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) on lipid metabolism were examined. C57BL/6J mice were fed a high-fat diet containing hot-water extract (HW-E) and an ethanol extract (EtOH-E) of Yamabushitake mushroom," researchers in Sendai, Japan, report.

"Administration of HW-E or EtOH-E with a high-fat diet for 28 days resulted in a significant decrease in body weight gain, fat weight, and serum and hepatic triacylglycerol levels. Our in vitro experiments indicated that EtOH-E acts as an agonist of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha (PPAR alpha). Quantitative analyses of hepatic mRNA levels revealed that EtOH-E administration resulted in up-regulation of mRNA for a number of PPAR alpha-regulating genes in spite of the fact that the gene expression of PPAR alpha did not change," wrote K. Hiwatashi and colleagues, Tohoku University.

The researchers concluded, "These results suggest that EtOH-E improves lipid metabolism in mice fed a high-fat diet, and that these effects were mediated by modulation of lipid metabolic gene expression, at least in part via activation of PPAR alpha."

Hiwatashi and colleagues published their study in Bioscience Biotechnology and Biochemistry ("Yamabushitake Mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) Improved Lipid Metabolism in Mice Fed a High-fat Diet."Bioscience Biotechnology and Biochemistry, 2010;74(7):1447-1451).

For additional information, contact H. Shirakawa, Tohoku University, Graduate School Agriculture Science, Laboratory Nutrition, Sendai, Miyagi 9818555, Japan.

From the September 7, 2010, Prepared Foods E-dition