This study examined the effect of genistein isolated from Hydrocotyle sibthorpioides on chronic alcohol-induced hepatic injury and fibrosis. Rats underwent intragastric administration of alcohol (5.0-9.5g/kg) once a day for 24 weeks. A subset of rats were also intragastrically treated with genistein (0.5, 1 or 2mg/kg) once a day. Genistein significantly decreased the plasma alcohol concentration, inhibited the activities of alanine and aspartate aminotransferases and decreased levels of inflammatory mediators, including interleukin 6, tumor necrosis factor-α and myeloperoxidase, via down-regulation of nuclear factor-κB. Moreover, genistein effectively inhibited collagen deposition and reduced pathological tissue damage as determined by hepatic fibrosis biomarkers, such as total hyaluronic acid, laminin, and type III collagen. Mechanistically, studies showed that genistein markedly reduced lipid peroxidation, recruited the anti-oxidative defense system, inhibited CYP2El activity, promoted extracellular matrix degradation by modulating the levels of tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase-1 and matrix metalloproteinase-2, induced HSC apoptosis by down-regulating B-cell lymphoma 2 mRNA, and inhibited the expression of α-smooth muscle actin and transforming growth factor β(1) proteins. In conclusion, genistein exerts a preventative effect to ameliorate developing liver injury and even liver fibrosis induced by chronic alcohol administration in rats.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.