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Keywords:

  • Adipocyte differentiation;
  • Adiponectin;
  • Obesity;
  • Soy peptides;
  • Soybean protein peptic hydrolysate

Scope

The molecular mechanisms underlying the potential health benefit effects of soybean proteins on obesity-associated metabolic disorders have not been fully clarified. In this study, we investigated the effects of soluble soybean protein peptic hydrolysate (SPH) on adipocyte differentiation by using 3T3-L1 murine preadipocytes.

Methods and results

The addition of SPH increased lipid accumulation during adipocyte differentiation. SPH increased the mRNA expression levels of an adipogenic marker gene and decreased that of a preadipocyte marker gene, suggesting that SPH promotes adipocyte differentiation. SPH induced antidiabetic and antiatherogenic adiponectin mRNA expression and secretion. Moreover, SPH increased the mRNA expression levels of insulin-responsive glucose transporter 4 and insulin-stimulated glucose uptake. The expression levels of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ), a key regulator of adipocyte differentiation, during adipocyte differentiation were up-regulated in 3T3-L1 cells treated with SPH, and lipid accumulation during adipocyte differentiation induced by SPH was inhibited in the presence of a PPARγ antagonist. However, SPH did not exhibit PPARγ ligand activity.

Conclusion

These findings indicate that SPH stimulates adipocyte differentiation, at least in part, via the up-regulation of PPARγ expression levels. These effects of SPH might be important for the health benefit effects of soybean proteins on obesity-associated metabolic disorders.