The protective effect of ethyl pyruvate on lung injury after burn in rats

Saudi Med J. 2007 Oct;28(10):1489-92.


Objective: To investigate the effects of administered ethyl pyruvate (EP), a novel anti-inflammatory agent, on oxidoinflammatory and apoptotic pathways in the lung tissue of rats in a full-thickness burn model.

Methods: The study took place in Ankara Research and Training Hospital Animal Laboratory, Turkey in June 2006. Thirty-two rats were randomly divided into 4 groups in equal numbers as sham, burn, sham+EP, and burn+EP. The burn model, used produced a full thickness burn of the 30-35% of the total body surface area. Ethyl pyruvate was administered as 40 mg/kg intraperitoneally. Rats were sacrificed after 24 hours, acute lung injury (ALI) was evaluated by direct light microscopy and apoptosis was evaluated by caspase-3 staining. Oxidoinflammatory events were evaluated by determining the tissue levels of myeloperoxidase (MPO), lipid peroxidation products, and nitrite.

Results: No significant difference was observed in lung tissue nitrite and malondialdehyde levels among the study groups. Histopathological results revealed that ALI and apoptosis were significantly higher in the burn group and EP prevented this effect. Similar results were obtained in tissue MPO levels.

Conclusion: Ethyl pyruvate is a novel, potent anti-inflammatory agent. This agent prevented leukocyte infiltration, ALI, and apoptotic loss of the lung tissue in thermal injury.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / physiology
  • Burns / complications*
  • Burns / metabolism
  • Burns / pathology
  • Lipid Peroxidation / physiology
  • Nitrites / metabolism
  • Peroxidase / metabolism
  • Pyruvates / therapeutic use*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Respiratory Distress Syndrome / etiology*
  • Respiratory Distress Syndrome / prevention & control*


  • Nitrites
  • Pyruvates
  • ethyl pyruvate
  • Peroxidase