Impact of pretreatment with carnitine and tadalafil on contrast-induced nephropathy in CKD patients

Ren Fail. 2019 Nov;41(1):976-986. doi: 10.1080/0886022X.2019.1669459.


Objective: The present study assesses whether phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE-5) inhibitor or carnitine exert nephroprotective effects against clinical contrast-induced nephropathy (CIN).Materials and Methods: The present study consisted of three groups of CKD patients. The first group was control group, who were treated with N-acetyl-L-cysteine 1 day before and on the day of radiocontrast administration. The second one was carnitine group, where the patients were infused with carnitine over 10 min 2 h prior to the radiocontrast administration and 24 h post CT. The third one was PDE-5 inhibitor group, where patients were given tadalafil 2 h prior to the administration of the radiocontrast and in the subsequent day. Urine and blood samples were collected before and at the following time sequence: 2, 6, 12, 24, 48, and 120 h after the contrast administration, for creatinine and NGAL determination.Results: Pretreated with N-acetyl-L-cysteine prior to administration of contrast media (CM) to CKD patients caused a significant increase in urinary but not of plasma neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) and serum creatinine (SCr). In contrast, pretreatment with carnitine prevented the increase in urinary NGAL and reduced SCr below basal levels. Similarly, tadalafil administration diminished the elevation of CM-induced urinary NGAL.Conclusions: These results indicate that carnitine and PDE-5 inhibitors may comprise potential therapeutic maneuvers for CIN.

Keywords: NGAL; Radiocontrast; acute kidney injury; carnitine; phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitor.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carnitine / therapeutic use*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Female
  • Haptoglobins / genetics
  • Humans
  • Kidney Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Kidney Diseases / genetics
  • Kidney Diseases / prevention & control
  • Male
  • Phosphodiesterase 5 Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / complications*
  • Tadalafil / therapeutic use*


  • Haptoglobins
  • Phosphodiesterase 5 Inhibitors
  • Tadalafil
  • Carnitine