Protective effects of berberine on various kidney diseases: Emphasis on the promising effects and the underlined molecular mechanisms

Life Sci. 2022 Oct 1:306:120697. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2022.120697. Epub 2022 Jun 16.


Berberine (BBR) is a pentacyclic benzylisoquinoline alkaloid that can be found in diversity of medicinal plants. BBR has a wide range of pharmacological bioactivities, in addition when administrated orally, it has a broad safety margin. It has been used as an antidiarrheal, antimicrobial, and anti-diabetic drug in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. Several scholars have found that BBR has promising renoprotective effects against different renal illnesses, including diabetic nephropathy, renal fibrosis, renal ischemia, renal aging, and renal stones. Also, it has renoprotective effects against nephrotoxicity induced by chemotherapy, heavy metal, aminoglycosides, NSAID, and others. These effects imply that BBR has an evolving therapeutic potential against acute renal failure and chronic renal diseases. Hence, we report herein the beneficial therapeutic renoprotective properties of BBR, as well as the highlighted molecular mechanism. In conclusion, the studies discussed throughout this review will afford a comprehensive overview about renoprotective effect of BBR and its therapeutic impact on different renal diseases.

Keywords: Anti-inflammatory; Antioxidant; Berberine; Renal diseases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Berberine* / pharmacology
  • Berberine* / therapeutic use
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental* / drug therapy
  • Diabetic Nephropathies* / drug therapy
  • Diabetic Nephropathies* / prevention & control
  • Kidney


  • Berberine