Antioxidative and Protective Actions of Apigenin in a Paracetamol-Induced Hepatotoxicity Rat Model

  • Aleksandar Rašković
  • Slobodan Gigov
  • Ivan Čapo
  • Milica Paut Kusturica
  • Boris Milijašević
  • Sunčica Kojić-Damjanov
  • Nikola Martić
Original Research Article


Background and Objectives

Apigenin is known to have various pharmacological properties without causing significant toxicity; however, hepatoprotective effect of apigenin is not often reported. The aim of our study was to investigate if the alterations in lipid peroxidation and antioxidant status are in favor to prove the efficacy of apigenin against paracetamol-induced hepatotoxicity.


The effect of apigenin on paracetamol-induced hepatotoxicity in rats was examined by determining biochemical parameters, histological assessment and oxidative status in liver homogenates.


The treatment of animals with both apigenin and paracetamol attenuates the parameters of hepatotoxicity, especially for ALT and ALP activity which was significantly lower compared to groups of animals treated with saline and paracetamol. Hepatotoxicity induced by toxic dose of paracetamol was revealed also by notable histopathological alterations, which were not observed in the group treated with paracetamol together with apigenin. Apigenin also prevented paracetamol-induced increase in malondialdehyde (MDA) level. The activities of both CAT (catalase) and GR (glutathione reductase) enzymes after the toxic dose of paracetamol were significantly increased in the liver homogenates, compared to control group. Apigenin reversed these parameters near to values of control group.


The result of our study indicates that apigenin inhibits the level of lipid peroxidation and significantly increases the enzyme antioxidant defense mechanisms in paracetamol-induced hepatotoxicity in rats.


Paracetamol Glutathione Reductase Apigenin Liver Homogenate Toxic Dose 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

Author Aleksandar Rašković, Author Slobodan Gigov, Author Ivan Čapo, Author Milica Paut Kusturica, Author Boris Milijašević, Author Sunčica Kojić-Damjanov, and Author Nikola Martić declare that they have no conflict of interest.


This work was supported by Provincial Secretariat for Higher Education and Scientific Research (Project No. 142-451-3680/2016-03) and by the Ministry of Science and Technological Development, Republic of Serbia (Project No. 41012).

Ethical Approval

Animal care and all experimental procedures were performed in agreement with the UK Animals Act 1986 and associated guidelines, the EEC Directive of 1986 (86/609/EEC). This study was approved by the Ethical Committee of the University of Novi Sad (Approval No. 01-160/9).


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aleksandar Rašković
    • 1
  • Slobodan Gigov
    • 1
  • Ivan Čapo
    • 1
  • Milica Paut Kusturica
    • 1
  • Boris Milijašević
    • 1
  • Sunčica Kojić-Damjanov
    • 1
  • Nikola Martić
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of MedicineNovi SadSerbia

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