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Chlorella unsaturated fatty acids suppress high-fat diet-induced obesity in C57/BL6J mice
Chlorella has been identified as a rich source of unsaturated fatty acids. Since the antiobesity effects of unsaturated fatty acids have been well documented; therefore, we explored the antiobesity actions of chlorella unsaturated fatty acids (C.UFAs) in the current study. The obtained results demonstrated C.UFAs, which contain abundant linoleic acid, could retard body weight gain (reducing body weigh by 13.93% after 16 weeks of treatment), improve blood glucose (19.29% lower) and lipid profile (23.45% lower in TG, 8.76% lower in TC) compared to high-fat diet-fed C57BL/6J mice. The possible underlying mechanisms might involve reducing hepatic lipid accumulation via down-regulation of lipogenic genes (PPARγ, C/EBPα, LPL, aP2, FAS, and SREBP-1c) and up-regulation of lipolytic gene (adiponectin). We also demonstrate C.UFAs could reduce HFD-induced adipocyte hypertrophy via activation of AMPK signaling pathway in adipose tissue and liver. In summary, our study highlights the potential of C.UFAs as a functional food for obesity management. Practical Application: Chlorella has already been commercialized as a functional food antiobesity function. In the current study, the unsaturated fatty acids isolated from chlorella were found to exert beneficial effects on hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia, hepatic steatosis, and adipocyte hypertrophy in high-fat diet-fed mice. This may provide theoretical foundation for developing novel chlorella-based functional foods.