Scope: Sea buckthorn (Hippophaes rhamnoides) is capable of ameliorating disturbed glucose metabolism in animal models and human subjects. Here, the effect of sea buckthorn oil as well as of extracts of fruits, leaves, and press cake on postprandial glucose metabolism is systematically investigated. Methods and results: Sea buckthorn did neither exert decisive effects in an in vitro model of intestinal glucose absorption nor did it alter insulin secretion. However, sea buckthorn stimulates GLUT4 translocation to the plasma membrane comparable to insulin, indicative of increased glucose clearance from the circulation. Isorhamnetin is identified in all sea buckthorn samples investigated and is biologically active in triggering GLUT4 cell surface localization. Consistently, sea buckthorn products lower circulating glucose by ≈10% in a chick embryo model. Moreover, sea buckthorn products fully revert hyperglycemia in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans while they are ineffective in Drosophila melanogaster under euglycemic conditions. Conclusion: These data indicate that edible sea buckthorn products as well as by-products are promising resources for hypoglycemic nutrient supplements that increase cellular glucose clearance into target tissues.
- glucose metabolism
- sea buckthorn