Author(s): Fitzenberger E, Deusing DJ, Wittkop A, Kler A, Kriesl E,
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Abstract Enhanced blood glucose levels are a hallmark of diabetes and are associated with diabetic complications and a reduction of lifespan. In order to search for plant extracts that display preventive activities in such a scenario, we tested 16 extracts used in human nutrition for their survival enhancing activities in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Nematodes were exposed for 48 h to 10 mM glucose in the absence or presence of 0.1\% extract. Thereafter, survival was measured at 37 °C. Extracts made from coffee, kola, rooibos and cinnamon, did not influence the glucose-induced reduction of survival. Those made from ginseng, camomile, lime blossom, paraguay tea, balm, rhodiola, black tea, or knotgrass all extended the lifespan of the glucose-treated nematodes significantly but did not rescue survival completely. Extracts from the leaves of blackberries, from hibiscus, elderberries, or jiaogulan completely countered the glucose-induced survival reduction. A potent activation of the proteasome was shown for the most preventive extracts suggesting a more efficient degradation of proteins impaired by glucose. In conclusion, we present a simple animal model to screen for plant extracts with potency to reverse glucose toxicity. Extracts from blackberry leaves, hibiscus, elderberries, and jiaogulan were identified as very potent in this regard whose exact mechanisms of action appear worthwile to investigate at the molecular level.
This article was published in Plant Foods Hum Nutr
and referenced in Journal of Diabetes & Metabolism