Archives of Toxicology

, Volume 84, Issue 5, pp 389–396 | Cite as

Comparative effects of curcumin and resveratrol on aflatoxin B1-induced liver injury in rats

  • Dina S. El-AgamyEmail author
Organ Toxicity and Mechanisms


Aflatoxin B1 is a potent hepatotoxic and hepatocarcinogenic mycotoxin. Lipid peroxidation and oxidative DNA damage are the principal manifestations of aflatoxin B1-induced toxicity that could be counteracted by antioxidants. Many plant constituents have been reported to prevent liver damage associated with lipid peroxidation. In this study, curcumin (polyphenolic antioxidant purified from turmeric) and resveratrol (polyphenol obtained from grapes) were evaluated for possible protection against liver injury induced by aflatoxin B1 in rats. Adult male Fischer rats were divided into six groups including untreated control, curcumin control (200 mg/kg BW), resveratrol control (10 mg/kg BW) and aflatoxin B1 (25 μg/kg BW). Other two groups were administered either curcumin or resveratrol along with aflatoxin B1. The study was carried out for 90 days. At the end of the experiment period, blood and tissue samples were collected from the animals before they were killed. Livers were collected for histopathologic studies and fixed in 10% buffered formalin solution. Serum was used for estimation of alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and γ-glutamyl transferase (γ-GT) enzymes. The lipid peroxidation, reduced glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) were estimated in liver homogenates. The results revealed that aflatoxin B1 administration caused liver damage as indicated by statistically significant (P < 0.05) increase in serum ALT, AST and γ-GT levels. In addition, there were general statistically significant reductions in the activities of GSH, SOD, CAT, GSH-Px, and an increase in lipid peroxidation in the liver of aflatoxin B1-treated group compared to the untreated control group. Curcumin showed a significant hepatoprotective activity by lowering the levels of serum marker enzymes, lipid peroxidation and elevating the levels of GSH, SOD, CAT and GSH-Px. However, resveratrol failed to protect from the aflatoxin B1-induced liver injury. These findings suggest that curcumin but not resveratrol has a hepatoprotective effect against aflatoxin B1-induced liver injury.


Aflatoxin B1 Liver injury Curcumin Resveratrol Oxidative stress Rat 



Aflatoxin B1


Body weight


Alanine aminotransferase


Aspartate aminotransferase


γ-Glutamyl transferase


Reduced glutathione


Superoxide dismutase




Glutathione peroxidase


Thiobarbituric acid reactive substances




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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Faculty of PharmacyMansoura UniversityMansouraEgypt

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