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Protective Role of Thiol Chelators Against Dimethylmercury Induced Toxicity in Male Rats


The present study was undertaken to establish mode of action, comparative therapeutic efficacy and safety evaluation of N-acetyl cysteine and dithiothreitol against acute dimethylmercury poisoning in rats. Male Sprague–Dawley albino rats (150 ± 10 g) were randomly divided into six groups. Group 1 served as control. Group 2–4 were administered dimethylmercury (10 mg/kg, p.o.) once only and group 2 served as experimental control. Animals of group 3 and 4 were received N-acetyl cysteine and dithiothreitol. Compared to the control, significant increase (p ≤ 0.05) was observed in the activities of aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, lipid peroxidation level and mercury ion concentration, however reduced glutathione, catalase, adenosine triphosphatase, acetyl cholinesterase (in brain only) were also decreased. It was concluded that N-acetyl cysteine provided maximum protection when compared with dithiothreitol group.

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Deepmala Joshi is grateful to the Jiwaji University, Gwalior- (M.P.) for Scholarship (F/DEV/2007/1277) 2004-2006. Authors want to thank to Prof. R. Mathur, School of Studies in Zoology, Jiwaji University, Gwalior for their invaluable suggestions.

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Correspondence to Deepmala Joshi.

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Joshi, D., Mittal, D.K., Shrivastava, S. et al. Protective Role of Thiol Chelators Against Dimethylmercury Induced Toxicity in Male Rats. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 84, 613–617 (2010).

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  • Dimethylmercury
  • N-acetyl cysteine
  • Dithiothreitol
  • Lipid peroxidation