Berberine improves liver injury following renal ischemia reperfusion in rats

Document Type : Regular Paper


1 Department of Biology, School of Sciences, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran

2 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran


This study investigated the effect of berberine on the hepatic dysfunction and histological damage induced by renal ischaemia/ reperfusion (I/R) at an early stage. There were four groups (n=7). In Ber+I/R group, rats received berberine (Ber; 15 mg/kg/day) orally for 7 days before induction of ischemia. I/R group received distilled water orally for 7 days. In sham and Ber+sham groups in which arteries were not occluded, distilled water and berberin (15 mg/kg/day) respectively were administered orally for 7 days before surgery. Renal ischemia was induced by occlusion of both renal arteries for 45 min followed by 24 h of reperfusion. Blood samples were collected for biochemical analysis, and finally liver samples were preserved for future histological examination. The renal ischaemic challenge resulted in major histological damage of the liver, which was associated with increased levels of creatinine, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and alkaline phosphatase (ALK) during reperfusion period. In Ber+I/R group, the histological damage to the liver was improved along with increase in plasma creatinine, BUN, ALT, AST, LDH and ALK being smaller than those of the non-treated rats. Berberine exhibited a hepatoameliorative effect against renal ischemia/reperfusion-induced lesions.