Renal ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury is a major cause of acute kidney injury. The pathogenetic mechanisms underlying I/R injury involve oxidative stress and apoptosis. Osthole, a natural coumarin derivative, has been reported to possess antioxidant and antiapoptotic activities. This study aimed to investigate the potential effects of osthole on renal I/R injury in an in vivo rat model.
We induced renal I/R injury by clamping the left renal artery for 45 min followed by reperfusion, along with a contralateral nephrectomy. We randomly assigned 54 rats to three groups (18 rats/group): sham-operated, vehicle-treated I/R, and osthole-treated I/R. We treated rats intraperitoneally with osthole (40 mg/kg) or vehicle (40 mg/kg) 30 min before renal ischemia. We harvested serum and kidneys at 1, 6, and 24 h after reperfusion. Renal function and histological changes were assessed. We also determined markers of oxidative stress and cell apoptosis in kidneys.
Osthole treatment significantly attenuated renal dysfunction and histologic damage induced by I/R injury. The I/R-induced elevation in kidney malondialdehyde level decreased, whereas reduced kidney superoxide dismutase and catalase activities were markedly increased. Moreover, osthole-treated rats had a dramatic decrease in apoptotic tubular cells, along with a decrease in caspase-3 and an increase in the Bcl-2/Bax ratio.
Osthole treatment protects murine kidney from renal I/R injury by suppressing oxidative stress and cell apoptosis. Thus, osthole may represent a novel practical strategy to prevent renal I/R injury.