J Ethnopharmacol. 2021 Jun 4:114300. Epub 2021 Jun 4. PMID: 34098018
Monascus ruber fermented Panax ginseng ameliorates lipid metabolism disorders and modulate gut microbiota in rats fed a high-fat diet.
ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Ginseng (Panax ginseng Meyer) is rich in a variety of biologically active ingredients, which shows good effect in the treatment of metabolic diseases. Monascus has lipid-lowering activity and one of its metabolites, lovastatin, is widely used in clinical practice.AIM OF THE STUDY: The main purpose of this study was to clarify the effects of fermented Panax ginseng by Monascus ruber (PM) on lipid metabolism and gut microbiota in rats fed a high-fat diet.MATERIALS AND METHODS: SPF Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 5 groups, the therapeutic effect of PM on HFD-induced obesity, hyperlipidemia, hepatic steatosis, and disordered gut microbiota were determined in rats.RESULTS: PM could attenuate features of obesity in rats, decrease serum TC, LDL-C and IgA levels, increase excretion of bile acids in feces. Hepatic histopathologic analysis revealed that PM decrease lipid accumulation in hepatocytes. Consistently, mRNA expression levels of cholesterol metabolism-related genes were regulated in the livers of HFD-fed rats administered with PM. In addition, PM could enhance the diversity and relative abundance of gut microbiota, reduce the Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes (F/B) ratio, increase significantly the relative abundance of Prevotella_9, and decrease these of Muribaculaceae.CONCLUSIONS: PM could regulate lipid metabolism and the structure of the gut microbiota in the HFD rats. Our findings provide valuable experience for the development of ginseng. PM could be a potentially effective strategy to prevent and treat metabolic diseases and alleviate the gut microbiota disturbance caused by it.