Nutr Res Pract.  2007 Dec;1(4):266-272.

Soybean isoflavone extract improves glucose tolerance and raises the survival rate in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats

  • 1Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 702-701, Korea.


The present study evaluated the effect of various dosages of soybean isoflavone extract on body weight changes, glucose tolerance and liver function in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. One group of normal rats (normal control) was fed an AIN-76-based experimental diet and four groups of diabetic rats were fed the same diet supplemented with four different levels of soybean isoflavone extract for seven weeks. The daily dosages of pure isoflavone for four diabetic groups were set to be 0 mg (diabetic control), 0.5 mg (ISO-I), 3.0 mg (ISO-II) and 30.0 mg (ISO-III) per kilogram of body weight, respectively. The daily consumption of isoflavone at the level of 3.0mg per kilogram of body weight resulted in the suppression of body weight loss and increased the survival rate of diabetic animals one and half times compared to that of the diabetic control group. Blood glucose levels in a fasting state and after the oral administration of glucose were significantly lower in the ISO-II group during the oral glucose tolerance test. The ISO-II group showed a tendency to elongate the gastrointestinal transit time. The activity of serum aminotransferases, indicator of liver function, was not negatively affected by any intake level of isoflavone. The present study demonstrated that the soybean isoflavone extract may be beneficial to diabetic animals by improving their glucose tolerance and suppressing weight loss without incurring hepatotoxicity at the daily dosage of 3.0 mg per kg of body weight.


Soybean isoflavone extract; streptozotocin; diabetic rat; glucose tolerance; survival rate
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