Background: Low expression of PGC-1α in Diabetes Mellitus (DM) is closely related to impaired function of mitochondria. Secondary metabolites from fermented lesser yam can increase the expression of PGC-1α protein.
Aim: This study evaluated the effect of lesser yam flour on Pgc-1α expression of brown adipose and skeletal muscle in diabetic rats.
Method: Twenty-five male Wistar rats, divided into 5 groups: 1) normal rats, 2) diabetic rats, 3) diabetic rats with 1.25 g, 4) diabetic rats with 2.5 g, and 5) diabetic rats with lesser yam flour 5 g per day. Diabetic rats were conducted by inducing of nicotinamide and streptozotocin via intraperitoneal injection. Blood glucose levels were measured before and after administration of the lesser yam flour. After 4 weeks of treatment, the brown adipose and the skeletal muscle tissues were taken under anesthesia, and the expression of Pgc-1α protein was analysed by immunohistochemistry method.
Results: Blood glucose levels were significantly reduced in the group of lesser yam compared to diabetic control group (P=0.001). The expression of Pgc-1α protein is highly expressed in both brown adipose and skeletal muscle tissues compared to diabetic control group (P=0.162; P=0.004), respectively.
Conclusion: Lesser yam may improve mitochondrial function through increased the expression of Pgc-1α protein.