Brain changing tubers: gene expression changes following mediaeval tuber consumption

N Woods, A Gebril, Ann Simpson, Ppm Iannetta, G Kenicer, R J Tate, B Pickard, A I Gray, V A Ferro

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract

Abstract

Discovered in the remnants of waste at Soutra Aisle, Scotland's largest medieval hospital, the tubers of Lathyrus linifolius are thought to have hunger suppressing capabilities dating back to the 1700 s. Sir Robert Sibbald, founding member of the Royal College of Physicians, spoke about these tubers in his book “Provision for the Poor in time of Dearth and Scarcity” [1]. It is also thought that these tubers provided a boost of energy, and were used when soldiers were at war. The active component is suspected to be trans-anethole, although this has still to be confirmed. The aim of this study was to determine if the traditional usage of these tubers could help in the development of therapeutics for the future. Following initial in vitro cytotoxicity screening on various cell lines (HS27, PNT2, ZR75, U937, SHSY5Y, 3T3-L1, Hek293), and a preliminary feeding trial on Sprague Dawley rats (n = 2), it was found that both the solvent extracts and the full tuber (powdered) showed no toxicity at the concentrations tested (100 µg/ml-3.125 µg/ml in vitro; 42 mg/kg body weight, based on traditional dosage, in vivo). Subsequently, a larger in vivo feeding trial (n = 8 per group) was carried out to assess the appetite suppressing capabilities. This study showed no effect on body weight, food intake or water intake following treatment with the tuber in comparison to the control group (0.9% saline), and a second test group (treated with trans-anethole at 42 mg/kg BW). Appetite and hunger are complex processes controlled primarily in the hypothalamus [2]. To determine if the tuber has any effect on gene expression in the hypothalamus, the subjects were sacrificed and the hypothalamus dissected. RNA was extracted from the hypothalamus and RNA sequencing was carried out in a preliminary study (n = 1). The results evidently show that this tuber has an effect at RNA level, with 565 genes being upregulated (> 2-fold), and 642 genes being downregulated (> 2-fold) in comparison to the control group.

Fingerprint

Gene expression
Hypothalamus
Brain
RNA
Gene Expression
Hunger
Appetite
Genes
Lathyrus
Body Weight
Cytotoxicity
RNA Sequence Analysis
Control Groups
Toxicity
Rats
Military Personnel
Screening
Scotland
Cells
Drinking

Keywords

  • appetite
  • hunger
  • medieval plant
  • RNA sequence
  • gene expression

Cite this

Woods, N ; Gebril, A ; Simpson, Ann ; Iannetta, Ppm ; Kenicer, G ; Tate, R J ; Pickard, B ; Gray, A I ; Ferro, V A. / Brain changing tubers : gene expression changes following mediaeval tuber consumption. In: Planta Medica. 2016 ; Vol. 81, No. S 01. pp. S1-S381.
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abstract = "Discovered in the remnants of waste at Soutra Aisle, Scotland's largest medieval hospital, the tubers of Lathyrus linifolius are thought to have hunger suppressing capabilities dating back to the 1700 s. Sir Robert Sibbald, founding member of the Royal College of Physicians, spoke about these tubers in his book “Provision for the Poor in time of Dearth and Scarcity” [1]. It is also thought that these tubers provided a boost of energy, and were used when soldiers were at war. The active component is suspected to be trans-anethole, although this has still to be confirmed. The aim of this study was to determine if the traditional usage of these tubers could help in the development of therapeutics for the future. Following initial in vitro cytotoxicity screening on various cell lines (HS27, PNT2, ZR75, U937, SHSY5Y, 3T3-L1, Hek293), and a preliminary feeding trial on Sprague Dawley rats (n = 2), it was found that both the solvent extracts and the full tuber (powdered) showed no toxicity at the concentrations tested (100 µg/ml-3.125 µg/ml in vitro; 42 mg/kg body weight, based on traditional dosage, in vivo). Subsequently, a larger in vivo feeding trial (n = 8 per group) was carried out to assess the appetite suppressing capabilities. This study showed no effect on body weight, food intake or water intake following treatment with the tuber in comparison to the control group (0.9{\%} saline), and a second test group (treated with trans-anethole at 42 mg/kg BW). Appetite and hunger are complex processes controlled primarily in the hypothalamus [2]. To determine if the tuber has any effect on gene expression in the hypothalamus, the subjects were sacrificed and the hypothalamus dissected. RNA was extracted from the hypothalamus and RNA sequencing was carried out in a preliminary study (n = 1). The results evidently show that this tuber has an effect at RNA level, with 565 genes being upregulated (> 2-fold), and 642 genes being downregulated (> 2-fold) in comparison to the control group.",
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Brain changing tubers : gene expression changes following mediaeval tuber consumption. / Woods, N; Gebril, A; Simpson, Ann; Iannetta, Ppm; Kenicer, G; Tate, R J; Pickard, B; Gray, A I; Ferro, V A.

In: Planta Medica, Vol. 81, No. S 01, 14.12.2016, p. S1-S381.

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract

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T1 - Brain changing tubers

T2 - Planta Medica

AU - Woods, N

AU - Gebril, A

AU - Simpson, Ann

AU - Iannetta, Ppm

AU - Kenicer, G

AU - Tate, R J

AU - Pickard, B

AU - Gray, A I

AU - Ferro, V A

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AB - Discovered in the remnants of waste at Soutra Aisle, Scotland's largest medieval hospital, the tubers of Lathyrus linifolius are thought to have hunger suppressing capabilities dating back to the 1700 s. Sir Robert Sibbald, founding member of the Royal College of Physicians, spoke about these tubers in his book “Provision for the Poor in time of Dearth and Scarcity” [1]. It is also thought that these tubers provided a boost of energy, and were used when soldiers were at war. The active component is suspected to be trans-anethole, although this has still to be confirmed. The aim of this study was to determine if the traditional usage of these tubers could help in the development of therapeutics for the future. Following initial in vitro cytotoxicity screening on various cell lines (HS27, PNT2, ZR75, U937, SHSY5Y, 3T3-L1, Hek293), and a preliminary feeding trial on Sprague Dawley rats (n = 2), it was found that both the solvent extracts and the full tuber (powdered) showed no toxicity at the concentrations tested (100 µg/ml-3.125 µg/ml in vitro; 42 mg/kg body weight, based on traditional dosage, in vivo). Subsequently, a larger in vivo feeding trial (n = 8 per group) was carried out to assess the appetite suppressing capabilities. This study showed no effect on body weight, food intake or water intake following treatment with the tuber in comparison to the control group (0.9% saline), and a second test group (treated with trans-anethole at 42 mg/kg BW). Appetite and hunger are complex processes controlled primarily in the hypothalamus [2]. To determine if the tuber has any effect on gene expression in the hypothalamus, the subjects were sacrificed and the hypothalamus dissected. RNA was extracted from the hypothalamus and RNA sequencing was carried out in a preliminary study (n = 1). The results evidently show that this tuber has an effect at RNA level, with 565 genes being upregulated (> 2-fold), and 642 genes being downregulated (> 2-fold) in comparison to the control group.

KW - appetite

KW - hunger

KW - medieval plant

KW - RNA sequence

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