, Volume 38, Issue 1, pp 445–455 | Cite as

Aspalathin and Nothofagin from Rooibos (Aspalathus linearis) Inhibits High Glucose-Induced Inflammation In Vitro and In Vivo

  • Sae-Kwang Ku
  • Soyoung Kwak
  • Yaesol Kim
  • Jong-Sup BaeEmail author


Vascular inflammation plays a key role in the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis, a major complication of diabetes mellitus. Aspalathin (Asp) and nothofagin (Not) are two major active dihydrochalcones found in green rooibos, which have been reported for their antioxidant activity. In this study, we assessed whether Asp or Not can suppress vascular inflammation induced by high glucose (HG) in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and mice. We monitored the effects of Asp or Not on HG-induced vascular hyperpermeability, expression of cell adhesion molecules (CAMs), formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and activation of nuclear factor (NF)-κB in vitro and in vivo. Our data indicate that HG markedly increased vascular permeability, monocyte adhesion, expression of CAMs, formation of ROS, and activation of NF-κB. Remarkably, treatment of Asp or Not inhibited HG-mediated vascular hyperpermeability, adhesion of monocytes toward HUVECs, and expression of CAMs. In addition, Asp or Not suppressed the formation of ROS and the activation of NF-κB. Since vascular inflammation induced by HG is critical in the development of diabetic complications, our results suggest that Asp or Not may have significant benefits in the treatment of diabetic complications.


aspalathin nothofagin high glucose diabetes mellitus inflammation 



This study was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Korea government [MSIP] (Grant Nos. 2013-067053).

Conflict of Interest

None declared.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sae-Kwang Ku
    • 1
  • Soyoung Kwak
    • 2
  • Yaesol Kim
    • 2
  • Jong-Sup Bae
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Anatomy and Histology, College of Korean MedicineDaegu Haany UniversityGyeongsanRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.College of Pharmacy, CMRI, Research Institute of Pharmaceutical SciencesKyungpook National UniversityDaeguRepublic of Korea

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