Purpose: We aimed to study the protective effects of pomegranate juice (PJ) on ethylene glycol (EG)-induced crystal deposition in renal tubules, renal toxicity, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and nuclear factor-kappaB activities in rat kidneys.
Materials and methods: Fifty-six rats were divided into four equal groups: Control, EG, EG + 50 microL PJ/d (PJ50), and EG + 100 microL PJ/d (PJ100). Rats were sacrified on days 10 and 45. Tissue sections were evaluated under light and polarized microscopy for the presence and degree of crystal deposition and toxicity in the kidneys. Crude extracts of the cortex were used to determine reduced gluthatione (GSH), nitric oxide (NO), and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels.
Results: In the EG group, crystal depositions were more evident and mild crystalization was observed in proximal tubules on day 10; severe crystalization and granulovacuolar epithelial cell degeneration were observed on day 45. There was limited or no crystal formation in the EG + PJ-given groups. There were completely normal renal and tubular structures in the control group. There was no significant difference between the four groups in serum levels of sodium, potassium, blood urea nitrogen, and creatinine in any sampling time. Hyperoxaluria, a marked increase in MDA and NO levels, and decrease of GSH were observed in the EG-given groups compared with the others. There were marked iNOS and p65 expressions in only the EG-given rats compared with control and PJ groups, immunohistochemically.
Conclusion: This experiment shows the protective effect of PJ in the EG-induced crystal depositions in renal tubules.