Protective effect of some chelating agents and antioxidants on the biohazards produced from water pollution by heavy metals in Wistar rats: biological, genetic and histopathological study

  • Ahmed A. Baiomy
  • Mohamed Mohamed Soliman
  • Dalia Y. Saad
  • Magdy Yassin Hassan
  • Gehan B.A. Youssef
Keywords: Lead, Mercury, Histopathology, DMSA, n-acetyl cysteine, gene expression


Background: Heavy metals that normally cause problems are mercury (HgCl2) and lead acetate (LA). Chelating and inhibitor agents are the target to treat and overcome metal toxicity. The current study has been carried out to evaluate the protective effects of N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) and meso 2,3 dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) against HgCl2 and LA toxicity.

Materials and Methods: Ninety male Wistar rats were divided into nine equal groups. The groups were administered NAC and/or DMSA in presence or absence of LA (LA; 0.2% in drinking water) or HgCl2 (2 mg/kg BW) for 2 consecutive months. Serum and organs were collected for biochemical, genetic and histopathological changes.

Results: Biochemical results revealed that LA and HgCl2 significantly increased the levels of liver and kidney biomarkers. Administration of NAC and DMSA considerably improved these altered changes. LA and HgCl2 decreased serum levels of antioxidants and were ameliorated in NAC and DMSA administered rats. LA and HgCl2 administration upregulated expression of IL-1β and IL-8 that were normalized by NAC and DMSA. Kidneys of LA and HgCl2 groups showed intraluminal hyaline casts. Kidneys of DMSA-administrated rats showed mild hydropic degeneration of renal tubular epithelium in LA and HgCl2 groups. Kidneys of NAC administrated rats showed atrophy of capillary tufts. Kidneys of LA and HgCl2 administered rats which received DMSA and NAC showed normal glomerular structure. Liver histopathology showed sever changes that were ameliorated by NAC and DMSA.

Conclusion: Taken together, usage of NAC and DMSA provide significant protection against LA and HgCl2-induced hepatotoxicity and nephrotoxicity in male Wistar rats.

Keywords: Lead, Mercury, Histopathology, DMSA, n-acetyl cysteine, gene expression


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eISSN: 0189-6016