Astragaloside IV Prevents Obesity-Associated Hypertension by Improving Pro-Inflammatory Reaction and Leptin Resistance

  • Jiang, Ping (Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine) ;
  • Ma, Dufang (Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine) ;
  • Wang, Xue (China Academy of Chinese Medica Sciences) ;
  • Wang, Yongcheng (Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine) ;
  • Bi, Yuxin (Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine) ;
  • Yang, Jinlong (Affiliated Hospital of Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine) ;
  • Wang, Xuebing (Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine) ;
  • Li, Xiao (Affiliated Hospital of Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine)
  • Received : 2017.08.01
  • Accepted : 2017.12.18
  • Published : 2018.03.31


Low-grade pro-inflammatory state and leptin resistance are important underlying mechanisms that contribute to obesity-associated hypertension. We tested the hypothesis that Astragaloside IV (As IV), known to counteract obesity and hypertension, could prevent obesity-associated hypertension by inhibiting pro-inflammatory reaction and leptin resistance. High-fat diet (HFD) induced obese rats were randomly assigned to three groups: the HFD control group (HF con group), As IV group, and the As IV + ${\alpha}$-bungaratoxin (${\alpha}-BGT$) group (As IV+${\alpha}-BGT$ group). As IV ($20mg{\cdot}Kg^{-1}{\cdot}d^{-1}$) was administrated to rats for 6 weeks via daily oral gavage. Body weight and blood pressure were continuously measured, and NE levels in the plasma and renal cortex was evaluated to reflect the sympathetic activity. The expressions of leptin receptor (LepRb) mRNA, phosphorylated signal transducer and activator of transcription-3 (p-STAT3), phosphorylated phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (p-PI3K), suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3) mRNA, and protein-tyrosine phosphatase 1B (PTP1B) mRNA, pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA and neuropeptide Y (NPY) mRNA were measured by Western blot or qRT-PCR to evaluate the hypothalamic leptin sensitivity. Additionally, we measured the protein or mRNA levels of ${\alpha}7nAChR$, inhibitor of nuclear factor ${\kappa}B$ kinase subunit ${\beta}/nuclear$ factor ${\kappa}B$ ($IKK{\beta}/NF-KB$) and pro-inflammatory cytokines ($IL-1{\beta}$ and $TNF-{\alpha}$) in hypothalamus and adipose tissue to reflect the anti-inflammatory effects of As IV through upregulating expression of ${\alpha}7nAChR$. We found that As IV prevented body weight gain and adipose accumulation, and also improved metabolic disorders in HFD rats. Furthermore, As IV decreased BP and HR, as well as NE levels in blood and renal tissue. In the hypothalamus, As IV alleviated leptin resistance as evidenced by the increased p-STAT3, LepRb mRNA and POMC mRNA, and decreased p-PI3K, SOCS3 mRNA, and PTP1B mRNA. The effects of As IV on leptin sensitivity were related in part to the up-regulated ${\alpha}7nAchR$ and suppressed $IKK{\beta}/NF-KB$ signaling and pro-inflammatory cytokines in the hypothalamus and adipose tissue, since co-administration of ${\alpha}7nAChR$ selective antagonist ${\alpha}-BGT$ could weaken the improved effect of As IV on central leptin resistance. Our study suggested that As IV could efficiently prevent obesityassociated hypertension through inhibiting inflammatory reaction and improving leptin resistance; furthermore, these effects of As IV was partly related to the increased ${\alpha}7nAchR$ expression.


Supported by : Chinese national natural science foundation


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