JNK and p38 gene and protein expression during liver ischemia-reperfusion in a rat model treated with silibinin

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Clinical Biochemistry and Genetics, Faculty of Medicine, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran

2 Genetic Biology, Islamic Azad University of Tonekabon, Tonekabon, Iran

3 Department of Anatomy and Biology, Faculty of Medicine, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran

4 Faculty of Medicine, Immunogenetic Research Center (IRC), Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran


Objective(s): Signal transduction of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) is activated during ischemia. In this study, c-Jun N-terminal Kinase (JNK) and p38 MAPK (p38) gene and protein expression were evaluated as two members of the MAPK family during liver ischemia-reperfusion in rats.
Materials and Methods: Thirty-two male Wistar rats were divided into four groups of eight: Vehicle, ischemia-reperfusion (IR), ischemia-reperfusion+silibinin (IR+SILI), and SILI. The IR and IR+SILI groups differed from the other two groups in that they underwent one hour of ischemia followed by three hr of reperfusion. The Vehicle and IR groups received normal saline while the SILI and IR+SILI groups were treated with silibinin (50 mg/kg). At the end of the reperfusion time, blood and ischemic liver tissue were collected for further experiments.
Results: The expression of JNK and p38 gene, the amount of serum hepatic injury indices, and malondialdehyde (MDA) in the IR group increased significantly compared with the vehicle group. The JNK and p38 gene expression decreased significantly in the IR + SILI group compared with the IR group. Glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and total antioxidant capacity (TAC) levels decreased in the IR group while increasing in the IR+SILI group. Histological examination showed that silibinin significantly reduced the severity of hepatocyte degradation. Western blot results were completely consistent with real-time PCR results.
Conclusion: The possible pathways of the protective effect of silibinin against hepatic ischemia damages is to reduce the expression of the p38 and JNK gene and protein. 


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