In this study, we examined whether melatonin improves metabolic syndrome induced by high fructose intake in male Wistar rats. Feeding of a diet containing 60% fructose (HFD) for 4 or 6 wk caused increased serum insulin, triglyceride, total cholesterol, free fatty acids, uric acid, leptin, and lipid peroxide concentrations as well as hepatic triglyceride and cholesterol concentrations, and relative intra-abdominal fat and liver weights. The 4- or 6-wk HFD feeding reduced serum high-density lipoprotein cholesterol and adiponectin concentrations. The 6-wk HFD feeding increased serum tumor necrosis factor-α concentration and hepatic lipid peroxide concentration and lowered hepatic reduced glutathione concentration. Daily intraperitoneal administration of melatonin (1 or 10 mg/kg body weight), starting at 4-wk HFD feeding, attenuated these changes at 6-wk HFD feeding more effectively at its higher dose than at its lower dose. In an oral glucose tolerance test, rats with 4- or 6-wk HFD feeding showed higher serum insulin response curve and normal serum glucose response curve when compared with the corresponding animals that received the control diet. The 4- or 6-wk HFD feeding caused insulin resistance, judging from the scores of HOMR-IR and QUICKI, which are indices of insulin resistance. The daily administered melatonin (1 or 10 mg/kg body weight) ameliorated the higher serum insulin response curve in the oral glucose tolerance test and insulin resistance at 6-wk HFD feeding more effectively at its higher dose than at its lower dose. These results indicate that melatonin improves metabolic syndrome induced by high fructose intake in rats.
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