Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from Lipids in Health and Disease and BioMed Central.

Open Access Open Badges Research

High-fat diet from perilla oil induces insulin resistance despite lower serum lipids and increases hepatic fatty acid oxidation in rats

Tao Zhang1, Shuang Zhao1, Wei Li1, Lanzhi Ma1, Ming Ding1, Ruisheng Li2 and Yuan Liu1*

Author Affiliations

1 Laboratory Animal Center of the Academy of Military Medical Science, Beijing 100071, China

2 Animal Laboratory Center, 302 Hospital of PLA, Beijing 100039, China

For all author emails, please log on.

Lipids in Health and Disease 2014, 13:15  doi:10.1186/1476-511X-13-15

Published: 15 January 2014



The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of a high-fat diet from perilla oil on serum lipids, hepatic lipid metabolism and insulin sensitivity.


Male Sprague–Dawley (SD) rats were fed either a control (CT) diet or a diet high in perilla oil (HP). After 16 weeks of feeding, the serum lipids were measured, and the gene expressions involved in hepatic fatty acid oxidation and synthesis were determined. In addition, hepatic fat deposition was detected, and insulin sensitivity was evaluated by means of euglycemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp.


Compared with the rats in the CT group, the HP-feeding significantly decreased the levels of triglyceride (TG), total cholesterol (TCH) and HDL-cholesterol (HDL-c). HP-feeding did not change the levels of LDL-cholesterol (LDL-c), free fatty acid (FFA), intrahepatic lipids or body weight. Moreover, the HP-feeding dramatically increased the mRNA expressions of fatty acid oxidation markers (PPAR-alpha, CPT1A) and fatty acid synthesis markers (SREBP-1, FASN and ACC) in the liver. The HP-feeding induced increased protein levels of CPT1A, while reducing the protein levels of FASN and ACC in the liver. However, the glucose infusion rate significantly increased in the HP group compared with the CT group.


Our data show that, in rats, excessive perilla oil intake may significantly lower serum lipids, strengthen hepatic fatty acid oxidation, and inhibit hepatic fatty acid synthesis, but at the same time may also lead to insulin resistance.

Perilla oil; Alpha-linolenic acid; Serum lipid; Fatty acid oxidation; Insulin sensitivity