Ascorbic acid supplementation causes faster restoration of reduced glutathione content in the regression of alcohol-induced hepatotoxicity in male guinea pigs

Redox Rep. 2012;17(2):72-9. doi: 10.1179/1351000212Y.0000000010.


Alcoholic liver disease is caused mainly by free radicals. Ascorbic acid (AA) and glutathione (GSH) are the major water-soluble antioxidants in the liver. The impact of AA supplementation on GSH, AA and activities of GSH-dependent enzymes in alcoholic guinea pigs was studied and was compared with alcohol abstention. Guinea pigs were administered ethanol at a dose of 4 g/kg body weight (b.wt)/day for 90 days. After 90 days, alcohol administration was stopped and one-half of the ethanol-treated animals were supplemented with AA (25 mg/100 g b.wt) for 30 days and the other half was maintained as the abstention group. There was a significant increase in the activities of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase in the serum of the ethanol group. In addition, a significant decrease in the GSH content, activities of GSH peroxidase, GSH reductase, and increased activity of GSH-S-transferase were observed in the liver of the ethanol group. Histopathological analysis and triglycerides content in the liver of the ethanol group showed induction of steatosis. But AA supplementation and abstention altered the changes caused by ethanol. However, maximum protective effect was observed in the AA-supplemented group indicating the ameliorative effect of AA in the liver.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alanine Transaminase / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Ascorbic Acid / therapeutic use*
  • Aspartate Aminotransferases / metabolism
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Fatty Liver / pathology
  • Glutathione / metabolism
  • Glutathione Peroxidase / metabolism
  • Glutathione Reductase / metabolism
  • Glutathione Transferase / metabolism
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Liver / pathology
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / drug therapy*
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / pathology
  • Male
  • gamma-Glutamyltransferase / metabolism


  • Glutathione Peroxidase
  • Glutathione Reductase
  • gamma-Glutamyltransferase
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • Aspartate Aminotransferases
  • Alanine Transaminase
  • Glutathione
  • Ascorbic Acid