European Journal of Nutrition

, Volume 57, Issue 5, pp 1829–1844 | Cite as

Cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) extract treatment improves triglyceridemia, liver cholesterol, liver steatosis, oxidative damage and corticosteronemia in rats rendered obese by high fat diet

  • Thamara C. Peixoto
  • Egberto G. Moura
  • Elaine de Oliveira
  • Patrícia N. Soares
  • Deysla S. Guarda
  • Dayse N. Bernardino
  • Xu Xue Ai
  • Vanessa da S. T. Rodrigues
  • Gabriela Rodrigues de Souza
  • Antonio Jorge Ribeiro da Silva
  • Mariana S. Figueiredo
  • Alex C. Manhães
  • Patrícia C. Lisboa
Original Contribution



Obese individuals have higher production of reactive oxygen species, which leads to oxidative damage. We hypothesize that cranberry extract (CE) can improve this dysfunction in HFD-induced obesity in rats since it has an important antioxidant activity. Here, we evaluated the effects of CE in food intake, adiposity, biochemical and hormonal parameters, lipogenic and adipogenic factors, hepatic morphology and oxidative balance in a HFD model.


At postnatal day 120 (PN120), male Wistar rats were assigned into two groups: (1) SD (n = 36) fed with a standard diet and (2) HFD (n = 36), fed with a diet containing 44.5% (35.2% from lard) energy from fat. At PN150, 12 animals from SD and HFD groups were killed while the others were subdivided into four groups (n = 12/group): animals that received 200 mg/kg cranberry extract (SD CE, HFD CE) gavage/daily/30 days or water (SD, HFD). At PN180, animals were killed.


HFD group showed higher body mass and visceral fat, hypercorticosteronemia, higher liver glucocorticoid sensitivity, cholesterol and triglyceride contents and microsteatosis. Also, HFD group had higher lipid peroxidation (plasma and tissues) and higher protein carbonylation (liver and adipose tissue) compared to SD group. HFD CE group showed lower body mass gain, hypotrygliceridemia, hypocorticosteronemia, and lower hepatic cholesterol and fatty acid synthase contents. HFD CE group displayed lower lipid peroxidation, protein carbonylation (liver and adipose tissue) and accumulation of liver fat compared to HFD group.


Although adiposity was not completely reversed, cranberry extract improved the metabolic profile and reduced oxidative damage and steatosis in HFD-fed rats, which suggests that it can help manage obesity-related disorders.


Obesity High fat diet Cranberry extract Corticosterone Lipids Oxidative stress 



The authors are grateful to Mr. Ulisses Siqueira and Miss Monica Moura for their technical assistance.

Author contributions

Concept and design: TCP, EGM, MSF, PCL. Animal treatment, collection of samples and measurements: TCP, PNS, DSG, DND, XXA, VSTR. Extract analyses: GRS, AJRS. Analysis and interpretation of data: TCP, EGM, EO, PNS, MSF, ACM, PCL. Drafting and/or revising the article critically for important intellectual content: TCP, EGM, EO, ACM, PCL. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Financial support

Research was supported by the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq), the State of Rio de Janeiro Carlos Chagas Filho Research Foundation (FAPERJ) and Coordination for the Enhancement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interest.

Supplementary material

394_2017_1467_MOESM1_ESM.doc (181 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 181 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thamara C. Peixoto
    • 1
  • Egberto G. Moura
    • 1
  • Elaine de Oliveira
    • 1
  • Patrícia N. Soares
    • 1
  • Deysla S. Guarda
    • 1
  • Dayse N. Bernardino
    • 1
  • Xu Xue Ai
    • 1
  • Vanessa da S. T. Rodrigues
    • 1
  • Gabriela Rodrigues de Souza
    • 2
  • Antonio Jorge Ribeiro da Silva
    • 2
  • Mariana S. Figueiredo
    • 1
  • Alex C. Manhães
    • 3
  • Patrícia C. Lisboa
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Endocrine Physiology, Departamento de Ciências Fisiológicas, 5o andar, Instituto de BiologiaUniversidade do Estado do Rio de JaneiroRio de JaneiroBrazil
  2. 2.Department of Program of Natural Products, Phytochemical Analysis Laboratory, Institute for Natural Products ResearchFederal University of Rio de JaneiroRio de JaneiroBrazil
  3. 3.Laboratory of Neurophysiology, Departamento de Ciências Fisiológicas, 5o andar, Instituto de BiologiaUniversidade do Estado do Rio de JaneiroRio de JaneiroBrazil

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