Thymoquinone (TQ) is the major active compound derived from Nigella sativa. Our aim of this work was to evaluate the antioxidant and antiarthritic activity of TQ in Wistar rat by collagen induced arthritis (CIA). TQ was administered at a dose of 5mgkg(-1) body weight once daily for 21days. The effects of treatment in the rats were assessed by biochemical (articular elastase, MPO, LPO, GSH, catalase, SOD and NO), inflammatory mediators (IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α, IL-10, IFN-γ and PGE(2)) and histological studies in joints. TQ was effective in bringing significant changes on all the parameters (articular elastase, MPO, LPO, GSH, catalase, SOD and NO) studied. Oral administration of TQ resulted in significantly reduced the levels of pro-inflammatory mediators (IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α, IFN-γ and PGE(2)) and increased level of IL-10. The protective effects of TQ against RA were also evident from the decrease in arthritis scoring and bone histology. In conclusion, the fact that TQ abolished a number of factors known to be involved in RA pathogenesis indicates that the administration of thymoquinone may have potential value in the treatment of inflammatory disease.
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