Diet-induced central obesity and insulin resistance in rabbits.J Anim Physiol Anim Nutr (Berl) 2008; 92(1):105-11JA
The present study was designed to examine whether rabbits fed a diet containing high fat and sucrose could develop obesity and insulin resistance (IR), the major pathophysiological features of metabolic syndrome. Male Japanese white rabbits were fed either a normal chow diet (control) or high fat and sucrose diet (HFSD) for 36 weeks. Plasma levels of triglycerides (TG), total cholesterol (TC), glucose and insulin were measured. To evaluate glucose metabolism, we performed an intravenous glucose tolerance test. In addition, we compared adipose tissue accumulation in HFSD-fed rabbits with that in normal rabbits. HFSD constantly and significantly led to an increase in body weight of HFSD-fed rabbits, caused by significantly higher visceral adipose tissue accumulation. Although there were no differences in plasma TG, TC, glucose, insulin levels and blood pressure between the two groups, HFSD-fed rabbits showed impaired glucose clearance associated with higher levels of insulin secretion compared to control rabbits. Our results showed that HFSD induced IR and increased adipose accumulation in rabbits, suggesting that HFSD-fed rabbits may become a model for research on human IR and obesity.