Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology

, Volume 70, Issue 6, pp 833–841 | Cite as

6-gingerol ameliorated doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity: role of nuclear factor kappa B and protein glycation

  • Wesam M. El-Bakly
  • Manal L. Louka
  • Ali M. El-Halawany
  • Mona F. Schaalan
Original Article



Doxorubicin is a widely used antitumour drug. Cardiotoxicity is considered a major limitation for its clinical use. The present study was designed to assess the possible antioxidant and antiapoptotic effects of 6-gingerol in attenuating doxorubicin-induced cardiac damage.


Male albino rats were treated with either intraperitoneal doxorubicin (18 mg/kg divided into six equal doses for 2 weeks) and/or oral 6-gingerol (10 mg/kg starting 5 days before and continued till the end of the experiment).


6-gingerol significantly ameliorated the doxorubicin-induced elevation in the cardiac enzymes. The stimulation of oxidative stress by doxorubicin was evidenced by the significant decrease in the serum soluble receptor for advanced glycation endproduct allowing unopposed serum advanced glycation endproduct availability. Moreover, doxorubicin activated nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) which was indicated by an increase in its immunohistochemical staining in the nucleus. In addition, doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity was accompanied by elevation of cardiac caspase-3. Notably, pretreatment with 6-gingerol significantly ameliorated the changes in sRAGE, NF-κB and cardiac caspase-3. Cardiac enzymes showed significant positive correlation with NF-κB and caspase-3 but negative with serum sRAGE, suggesting their role in doxorubicin-induced cardiac injury. These findings were confirmed by cardiac tissue histopathology.


6-gingerol, a known single compound from ginger with anticancer activity, was shown to have a promising role in cardioprotection against doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity. This study suggested a novel mechanism for 6-gingerol cardioprotection, which might be mediated through its antioxidative effect and modulation of NF-κB as well as apoptosis.


Doxorubicin (DOX)-cardiotoxicity 6-gingerol Nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) Caspase-3 sRAGE (receptor for advanced glycation endproducts) 



Thanks for Dr Ghada Galal for helping in histopathology.

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wesam M. El-Bakly
    • 1
  • Manal L. Louka
    • 2
  • Ali M. El-Halawany
    • 3
  • Mona F. Schaalan
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Faculty of MedicineAin Shams UniversityCairoEgypt
  2. 2.Department of Medical Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of MedicineAin Shams UniversityCairoEgypt
  3. 3.Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Kasr El AinyCairo UniversityCairoEgypt
  4. 4.Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of PharmacyMisr International UniversityCairoEgypt

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