Department of Pharmacy, University G. d’Annunzio, Via dei Vestini 31, 66100 Chieti, Italy
A wide group of natural compounds (flavonoids, stilbenes, neolignans and others) has been identified as Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor (PPAR) agonists, with a large variety of chemical structure and different activity versus the three PPAR subtypes. These receptors are transcription factors controlling metabolic pathways in the organism, involved in lipid and glucose metabolism, cell differentiation and energy homeostasis. Otherwise, very little is known about natural compounds able to inhibit PPARs. A number of studies demonstrate that PPARγ repression has a beneficial effect in reducing body weight and improving insulin sensitivity, suggesting a potential clinical role in obesity and type 2 diabetes. This review analyzes natural compounds able to repress PPAR activity and their potential use in metabolic disorders.
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