Objective: To explore the protective effects of curcumin against renal injury induced by formaldehyde in rats.
Methods: A total of 21 male Sprague–Dawley rats were included. The animals were divided into three groups. The control group received 10 ml/kg of physiological saline intragastrically and intraperitoneally on a daily basis. The formaldehyde group were given 10 ml/kg of physiological saline intragastrically plus 10 mg/kg of formaldehyde intraperitoneally. The formaldehyde + curcumin group received 10 mg/kg of intraperitoneal formaldehyde daily as well as 100 mg/kg of curcumin intragastrically. After the completion of 14 days, the kidneys were removed. Tissue microscopic examination was performed with haematoxylin–eosin and periodic acid–Schiff staining. Also, superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) and xanthine oxidase (XO) activities, and malondialdehyde (MDA) and nitric oxide (NO) levels were measured in tissue samples.
Results: Formaldehyde induced renal injury. The degenerative tissue changes in the formaldehyde + curcumin group seemed to regress, exhibiting similar characteristics to those of the controls. MDA, XO and NO were significantly higher in formaldehyde group than in controls, while a significant reduction occurred in SOD, CAT and GSH-Px activities in the formaldehyde group. Also, renal tissue MDA, XO and NO were significantly lower in the formaldehyde + curcumin group than in the formaldehyde group, while tissue SOD, CAT and GSH-Px activities were significantly higher.
Conclusion: Curcumin improved the formaldehyde-induced renal degeneration. Also, curcumin was found to prevent the reduction in SOD, CAT and GSH-Px activities, while preventing MDA, XO and NO levels, exhibiting a protective effect against the formaldehyde-induced oxidative renal injury.