This study aimed to examine the effects of Val-Pro-Pro (VPP), a food-derived peptide with an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitory property, on obesity-linked insulin resistance, and adipose inflammation in vivo and in vitro.Methods and results:
C57BL/6J mice were fed high-fat high-sucrose diet and VPP (0.1% in water) for 4 months. For in vitro analysis, coculture of 3T3-L1 adipocytes overexpressing either ACE (3T3-ACE) or green fluorescent protein (3T3-GFP) and RAW264 macrophages was conducted with VPP. In diet-induced obese mice, VPP improved insulin sensitivity, concomitant with a significant decrease in tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) and IL-1β expression in adipose tissue, with a tendency (p = 0.06) toward decreased CC chemokine ligand 5 expression. Additionally, VPP administration inhibited macrophage accumulation and activation in fat tissues. In vitro, VPP attenuated TNF-α mRNA induced by ACE overexpression in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. TNF-α and IL-1β expression decreased following VPP treatment of RAW264 macrophage and 3T3-ACE adipocyte cocultures, but not in RAW264–3T3-GFP adipocyte cocultures.Conclusion:
Our data suggest that VPP inhibits adipose inflammation in the interaction between adipocytes and macrophages, acting as an ACE inhibitor, thereby improving obesity-related insulin resistance. Thus, ingestion of VPP may be a viable protective and therapeutic strategy for insulin resistance and obesity-associated adipose inflammation.