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Diabetes mellitus is a serious health problem of Thais and also worldwide population, as it cannot be radically cured. Insulin resistance is an essential cause of Type 2 diabetes. Long term high fat and high fructose diet (HFFD) consumption can cause an insulin resistance leading to hyperglycemia, glucose intolerance and dyslipidemia. This study aimed to investigate the effects of aril extract of Momordica cochinchinensis (MCE) on glucose and fat metabolism in HFFD-induced insulin resistant rats. Male Wistar rats were used. The rats in the normal group were fed normal chow, while those in the insulin resistant group were fed HFFD (40% lard and 20% fructose) throughout the experimental period. At week 4 of normal chow or HFFD feeding, treatments were applied for further eight weeks, as follows: Group I: normal chow with distilled water (DW); Group II: normal chow with MCE 500 mg/kg/day; Group III: HFFD with DW; Group IV-V: HFFD with MCE 250 and 500 mg/kg/day; Group VI: HFFD with pioglitazone 10 mg/kg/day. Following this, fasting blood glucose (FBG), oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), serum insulin level, Homeostasis Model Assessment-Insulin Resistance (HOMA-IR), lipid profiles and expression of PPAR-a mRNA in liver were determined. The results showed that insulin resistant rats had high blood glucose and lipid levels, impaired OGTT, and high HOMA-IR value, which are the characteristics of Type 2 DM. The administration of MCE (250 and 500 mg/kg) significantly decreased FBG, reduced triglyceride and improved OGTT. However, MCE only showed a prominent tendency, but not significantly, to lower HOMA-IR values in HFFD feeding rats. Interestingly, MCE significantly increased the expression of liver PPAR-a mRNA of insulin resistant rats which may contribute to the action of MCE on glucose and fat metabolism in these rats. In conclusion, MCE possesses potential to be developed as supplementary agent in the treatment of insulin resistance and Type 2 DM patients.
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