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Hesperidin inhibits collagen-induced arthritis possibly through suppression of free radical load and reduction in neutrophil activation and infiltration


Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease characterized by the destruction of articular cartilage and bone in a chronic phase. Pathology of rheumatoid arthritis suggests autoimmunity linked to inflammation. In our study, rheumatoid arthritis was induced in Wistar rats by intradermal injections of 100 μl of emulsion containing bovine type II collagen in complete Freund’s adjuvant at the base of the tail. Disease developed about 13 ± 1 days after immunization and treatment with hesperidin (HES) at a dose of 160 mg kg−1 body weight was given after onset of disease daily until 20th day. The effect of treatment in the rats was monitored by clinical scoring, biochemical parameters and histological evaluations in joints. A steady increase in the articular elastase, nitric oxide and lipid peroxidation was observed in joints of arthritic rats as compared to control, whereas a significant decrease in reduced glutathione, superoxide dismutase activity and catalase was observed in collagen-induced arthritis rats as compared to control group. The results from the present work indicate that the treatment with hesperidin was effective in bringing about significant changes on all the parameters studied in collagen-induced arthritis rats. These data confirm that erosive destruction of the joint cartilage in collagen-induced arthritis is due free radicals released by activated neutrophils and produced by other biochemical pathways. In the present study, an attempt has been made to amelioration of the disease process by a natural product. These results suggest that oral administration of HES could be effective for treating human RA patients.

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Author is grateful to Indian Council of Medical Research, for senior research fellowship (SRF) and to Central Council of Research in Unani Medicine (CCRUM), Department of AYUSH, Government of India for providing the financial support for this work.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Haider A. Khan.

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Umar, S., Kumar, A., Sajad, M. et al. Hesperidin inhibits collagen-induced arthritis possibly through suppression of free radical load and reduction in neutrophil activation and infiltration. Rheumatol Int 33, 657–663 (2013).

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  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Hesperidin
  • Articular elastase
  • Nitric oxide
  • Free radical