The purpose of this study was to evaluate the expressions and the roles of proteins involved in cell cycle regulation and DNA repair in cis-diamminedichloroplatinum (II) (cisplatin or CDDP)-induced acute renal failure (ARF). Treatment with CDDP (6 mg/kg, iv) induced tubular damage and increased serum creatinine (Scr) and the number of TUNEL-positive cells in the outer stripe of the outer medulla in rats, which reached peak levels at 5 days after CDDP. The expressions of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors (p21 and p27), cyclin B1, cyclin D1, PCNA, GADD 45, and GADD 153 were significantly increased in the outer medulla, reaching peak levels at 3 days after CDDP. Increments of p27 and PCNA were observed in the same nuclei. Sodium arsenite (SA), a heavy metal, attenuated tubular damage and increased Scr- and TUNEL-positive cells at 5 days after CDDP. SA augmented CDDP-induced increment of p27 but suppressed the increased expression of cyclin B1 and cyclin D1 at 3 days after CDDP. SA-induced attenuation of nephrotoxicity was associated with enhanced expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) and growth-arrest and DNA damage (GADD) 153 in damaged tubular cells. Our findings indicated that (1) proteins related to cell cycle regulation and DNA repair are induced in CDDP nephrotoxicity, (2) the SA-induced attenuation of CDDP nephrotoxicity is associated with increased expression of p27 and decreased expression of cyclin B1 and cyclin D1, they all induce cell cycle arrest at G1/S and G2/M, and (3) enhanced expression of DNA repair-related proteins is also associated with attenuation of CDDP-nephrotoxicity.