Berberine Ameliorates Insulin Resistance by Inhibiting IKK/NF-κB, JNK, and IRS-1/AKT Signaling Pathway in Liver of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus Rats
Abstract:Introduction: Berberine is derived from rhizoma coptidis, a well-known Traditional Chinese herbal Medicine that has been found to be effective in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus in recent years. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of berberine on a gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) rat model and the related mechanisms. Methods: GDM was induced in Sprague–Dawley rats using a high-fat diet before and during pregnancy. Berberine (100 mg/kg/day) was administered from the 7th to 20th day of pregnancy. Insulin resistance (IR), glucose tolerance, and maternal, fetal, and placental weight were determined. Liver histopathological analysis, as well as analysis of C-reactive protein (CRP), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), inhibitor kappa B kinaseβ (IKKβ), nuclear factor kappa-B (NF-κB), c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1), and protein kinase B (AKT), was performed at the end of pregnancy. Results: Treatment of GDM rats with berberine markedly decreased IR, the number of dead and absorptive fetuses, maternal body weight gain, and fetal and placental weight compared with GDM without berberine. Furthermore, berberine decreased CRP and TNF-α levels, IKKβ expression, NF-κB P65 nuclear translocation, and changed the phosphorylation of JNK, IRS-1, and AKT in the liver of GDM rats. Conclusions: Berberine improved IR and maternal–fetal outcomes of GDM rats, possibly through modulation of IKK/NF-κB, JNK, and IRS-1/AKT signaling pathways in the liver. Therefore, berberine may be a potential GDM treatment.
Keywords: gestational diabetes mellitus / berberine / insulin resistance / inflammatory cytokines / signaling pathways
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