Daidzin, an Antioxidant Isoflavonoid, Decreases Blood Alcohol Levels and Shortens Sleep Time Induced by Ethanol Intoxication

Academic Article


  • The extract from an edible vine, Pueraha lebata has been reported to be efficacious in lessening alcohol intoxication. In this study, we have tested the efficacy of one of the major components, daidzin, from this plant extract. When ethanol (40% solution, 3 g/kg body weight) was given to fasted rats intragastrically, blood alcohol concentration (BAC) peaked at 30 min after alcohol ingestion and reached 1.77 ± 0.14 mg/ml (mean values ±sd, n = 6). If daidzin (30 mg/kg) was mixed with the ethanol solution and given to animals intragastrically, BAC was found to peak at 90 min after alcohol ingestion and reached only 1.20 ± 0.30 mg/ml (n = 6) (p < 0.05 vs. controls). The ability of daidzin to delay and decrease peak BAC level after ethanol ingestion was also observed in fed animals, in both fasted and fed rats given alcohol without daidzin, BAC quickly declined after reaching its peak at 30 min. By contrast, BAC levels receded more slowly if daidzin was also fed to the animals. Daidzin showed a chronic effect. Rats fed daidzin for 7 days before ethanol challenge, but not on the day of challenge, also produced lower and later peak BAC levels. Interestingly, daidzin, whether fed to rats only once or chronically for 7 days, did not significantly alter activities of either alcohol dehydrogenase or mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase in the liver. Further experiments demonstrated that daidzin shortened sleep time for rats receiving ethanol intragastrically (7 g/ kg) but not intraperitoneally (2 g/kg). To test whether daidzin delayed stomach‐emptying, [Clpolyethylene glycol was mixed with ethanol and fed to rats. It was found that, 30 min after intragastric feeding, more ethanol and [14C]polyethylene glycol remained in the stomach if rats were also given daidzin. Because daidzin is an isoflavonoid glucoside that possesses strong antioxidant activity, two other antioxidants (i.e., vitamin E and thioctic acid) were tested. Similar to daidzin, these two antioxidants also delayed and suppressed peak BAC, as well as shortened sleep time induced by alcohol ingestion. We conclude that: (1) daidzin is effective in countering alcohol intoxication; (2) suppression of BAC by daidzin is due mainly to delay of stomach‐emptying, but not to accelerated clearance of ethanol in circulation by liver enzymes; and (3) the effect of daidzin may in part be due to its antioxidant activity. Copyright © 1994, Wiley Blackwell. All rights reserved
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    Author List

  • Xie C; Lin RC; Antony V; Lumeng L; Li T; Mai K; Liu C; Wang Q; Zhao Z; Wang G
  • Start Page

  • 1443
  • End Page

  • 1447
  • Volume

  • 18
  • Issue

  • 6