Galectin-12 is Involved in Corn Silk-Induced Anti-Adipogenesis and Anti-Obesity Effects

Yu An Hsu, Yi Hsin Kuo, Chih Sheng Chen, Ying Chi Chen, Chi Chun Huang, Ching Yao Chang, Chao Jen Lin, Cheng Wen Lin, Hui Ju Lin, Fu-Tong Liu, Lei Wan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


Obesity is a significant risk factor for various diseases. It is a clinical condition caused by the excessive accumulation of fat, which has a negative impact on human health. Galactin-12 is an adipocyte-expressed protein and possesses adipocyte-inducing activity. We investigated the expression level of candidate proteins involved in galactin-12-mediated adipocyte differentiation pathway. We performed a high-throughput screening assay to monitor galectin-12 promoter activity using 105 traditional Chinese herbs. Corn silk extract and (Formula presented.)-sitosterol reduced the expression of galactin-12 promoter in 3T3-L1 cells. In addition, corn silk extract and (Formula presented.)-sitosterol decreased the level of lipid droplets and downregulated the gene and protein expression level of C/EBP(Formula presented.), C/EBP(Formula presented.), PPAR(Formula presented.), Ap2, and adipsin in 3T3-L1 pre-adipocytes via AKT and ERK1/2 inhibition. In vivo study with the oral administration of corn silk extract and (Formula presented.)-sitosterol in a mouse model showed a significant weight reduction and decrease in adipocytes in several organs such as the liver and adipose tissue. Taken together, corn silk extract and (Formula presented.)-sitosterol may effectively reduce pre-adipocyte differentiation by inhibiting galectin-12 activity and exerting anti-obesity effects. These findings highlight the potential use of corn silk extract and (Formula presented.)-sitosterol as potential candidates for the prevention and treatment of obesity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
JournalAmerican Journal of Chinese Medicine
StateAccepted/In press - Jul 5 2018



  • (Formula presented.)-Sitosterol
  • Adipogenesis
  • Corn Silk
  • Galectin-12
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Complementary and alternative medicine

Cite this

Hsu, Y. A., Kuo, Y. H., Chen, C. S., Chen, Y. C., Huang, C. C., Chang, C. Y., Lin, C. J., Lin, C. W., Lin, H. J., Liu, F-T., & Wan, L. (Accepted/In press). Galectin-12 is Involved in Corn Silk-Induced Anti-Adipogenesis and Anti-Obesity Effects. American Journal of Chinese Medicine, 1-19.