Tempol ameliorates cardiac fibrosis in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats: role of oxidative stress in diabetic cardiomyopathy
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Long-standing diabetes is associated with increased oxidative stress and cardiac fibrosis. This, in turn, contributes to the progression of cardiomyopathy. The present study was sought to investigate whether the free radical scavenger, 4-hydroxy-2,2,6,6-tetramethyl piperidinoxyl (tempol) can protect against diabetic cardiomyopathy and to explore the specific underlying mechanism(s) in this setting. Diabetes was induced in rats by a single intraperitoneal injection dose of streptozotocin (50 mg/kg). These animals were treated with tempol (18 mg kg−1 day−1, orally) for 8 weeks. Our results showed significant increases in collagen IV and fibronectin protein levels and a marked decrease in matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) activity measured by gelatin-gel zymography alongside elevated cardiac transforming growth factor (TGF)-β level determined using ELISA or immunohistochemistry in cardiac tissues of diabetic rats compared with control. This was accompanied by an increased in the oxidative stress as evidenced by increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and decreased antioxidant enzyme capacity along with elevated lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and creatine kinase (CK-MB) serum levels as compared with the control. Tempol treatment significantly corrected the changes in the cardiac extracellular matrix, TGF-β, ROS or serum LDH, CK-MB levels, and normalized MMP-2 activity along with preservation of cardiac tissues integrity of diabetic rats against damaging responses. Moreover, tempol normalized the elevated systolic blood pressure and improved some cardiac functions in diabetic rats. Collectively, our data suggest a potential protective role of tempol against diabetes-associated cardiac fibrosis in rats via reducing oxidative stress and extracellular matrix remodeling.
KeywordsDiabetes Cardiac fibrosis Extracelluar matrix TGF-β Streptozotocin
The authors are grateful to Prof. Adel M. Bakeer, Professor of Pathology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Cairo University for his kind help in performing histopathological studies and interpretation of the results.
Conflict of interest
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