Protective effects of curcumin against oxidative stress parameters and DNA damage in the livers and kidneys of rats with biliary obstruction

Food Chem Toxicol. 2013 Nov;61:28-35. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2013.01.015. Epub 2013 Jan 29.


Curcumin, a most active antioxidant compound, has been suggested to have potential beneficial effects against most metabolic and psychological disorders, including cholestasis. In the present study, the effects of curcumin against oxidative stress and DNA damage induced by bile duct ligation (BDL) in Wistar albino rats for 14 days were investigated. The rats were divided into three following groups: Sham group, the BDL group and the BDL+curcumin group. A daily dose of 50mg/kg curcumin was given to the BDL+curcumin group intragastrically for 14 days. The biomarkers of hepatocellular damage were decreased in the BDL+curcumin group compared to the BDL group, indicating that curcumin recovered the liver functions. DNA damage as assessed by the alkaline comet assay was also found to be low in the BDL+curcumin group. Curcumin significantly reduced malondialdehyde and nitric oxide levels, and enchanced reduced glutathione levels and catalase, superoxide dismutase, and glutathione S-transferase enzymes activities in the livers and kidneys of BDL group. Curcumin treatment in BDL group was found to decrease tumor necrosis factor-alpha levels in the livers of rats. These results suggest that curcumin might have protective effects on the cholestasis-induced injuries in the liver and kidney tissues of rats.

Keywords: Bile duct ligation; Cholestasis; Curcumin; DNA damage; Liver functions; Oxidative stress.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Bile Ducts / surgery
  • Catalase / metabolism
  • Cholestasis / drug therapy*
  • Cholestasis / genetics
  • Cholestasis / metabolism
  • Cholestasis / pathology
  • Curcumin / pharmacology*
  • DNA Damage / drug effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Glutathione / metabolism
  • Glutathione Transferase / metabolism
  • Kidney / drug effects*
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Kidney / pathology
  • Liver / drug effects*
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Malondialdehyde / metabolism
  • Nitric Oxide / metabolism
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Protective Agents / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / metabolism


  • Antioxidants
  • Protective Agents
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Malondialdehyde
  • Catalase
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • Glutathione
  • Curcumin