Melatonin administration in diabetes: regulation of plasma Cr, V, and Mg in young male Zucker diabetic fatty rats
The use of melatonin, a neurohormone present in plants, represents an exciting approach for the maintenance of optimum health conditions. Melatonin administration ameliorates glucose homeostasis in Zucker diabetic fatty (ZDF) rats. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of melatonin in diabetes in relation to the levels and regulation of plasma chromium (Cr), vanadium (V), and magnesium (Mg) in Zucker diabetic fatty (ZDF) and Zucker lean (ZL) rats. At the age of 6 weeks, ZDF (n = 30) and ZL (n = 30) groups were each subdivided into three groups: control (C) (n = 10), vehicle-treated (V′) (n = 10) and melatonin-treated (M) (10 mg kg−1 per day; n = 10) groups for a 6 week period. After treatment, plasma mineral concentrations were measured by flame (Mg) and electrothermal (Cr and V) atomic absorption spectrometry. No significant differences were found between the C and V′ groups (p > 0.05). Plasma Mg levels were significantly lower in C-ZDF vs. C-ZL rats, demonstrating the presence of hypomagnesemia in this diabetes mellitus model. Plasma V and Cr levels were significantly higher in M-ZDF vs. C-ZDF rats. Plasma Mg levels in ZDF rats were not affected by melatonin treatment (p > 0.05). Melatonin administration ameliorates the diabetic status of ZDF rats by enhancing plasma Cr and V concentrations. This appears to be the first report of a beneficial effect of melatonin treatment on plasma Cr and V regulation in ZDF rats.