Molecular Biology Reports

, Volume 39, Issue 7, pp 7583–7589 | Cite as

Expression of TRPV1 in rabbits and consuming hot pepper affects its body weight

  • Qi Yu
  • Yanli Wang
  • Ying Yu
  • Yafeng Li
  • Sihai Zhao
  • Yulong Chen
  • Ahmed Bilal Waqar
  • Jianglin Fan
  • Enqi Liu


The capsaicin receptor, known as transient receptor potential vanilloid subfamily member 1 (TRPV1), is an important membrane receptor that has been implicated in obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular diseases. The rabbit model is considered excellent for studying cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, however, the tissue expression of TRPV1 and physiological functions of its ligand capsaicin on diet-induced obesity have not been fully defined in this model. In the current study, we investigated the tissue expression of TRPV1 in normal rabbits using real-time RT-PCR and Western blot analysis. Rabbit TRPV1 mRNA was highly expressed in a variety of organs, including the kidneys, adrenal gland, spleen and brain. A phylogenetic analysis showed that the amino acid sequence of rabbit TRPV1 was closer to human TRPV1 than rodent TRPV1. To examine the effect of capsaicin (a pungent compound in hot pepper) on body weight, rabbits were fed with either a high fat diet (as control) or high fat diet containing 1% hot pepper. We found that the body weight of the hot pepper-fed rabbits was significantly lower than the control group. We conclude that the intake of capsaicin can prevent diet-induced obesity and rabbit model is useful for the study of TRPV1 function in cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.


TRPV1 Rabbit Expression and distribution Hot pepper Body weight 



This study was partly supported by a National Natural Science Foundation of China (81070250), Public Service Platform Grant of Shaanxi Province (2010FWPT-15). The authors wish to thank Dr. Wang Xiaoyan of Biomedical Research & Development Center of Jinan University, for excellent technical assistance.

Conflict of interest


Supplementary material

11033_2012_1592_MOESM1_ESM.tif (31.4 mb)
Supplemental Fig. 1. Plasma total cholesterol levels (left, upper), plasma total triglycerides levels (right, upper), HDL-C levels (left, bottom) and LDL-C levels (right, bottom). *p < 0.05 versus the HCFD group. Data are expressed as the mean ± SEM


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Qi Yu
    • 1
  • Yanli Wang
    • 1
  • Ying Yu
    • 2
  • Yafeng Li
    • 1
  • Sihai Zhao
    • 1
  • Yulong Chen
    • 1
  • Ahmed Bilal Waqar
    • 2
  • Jianglin Fan
    • 2
  • Enqi Liu
    • 1
  1. 1.Research Institute of Atherosclerotic DiseaseXi’an Jiaotong University School of MedicineXi’anChina
  2. 2.Department of Molecular Pathology, Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Medicine and EngineeringUniversity of YamanashiKofuJapan

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