Wheat Germ Oil Attenuates Gamma Radiation-Induced Skeletal Muscles Damage In Rats

  • UZ Said
  • HN Saada
  • EME Mahdy
  • WG Shousha
  • SM Shedid


Muscular strength is important in sport as well as in daily activities. Exposure to ionizing radiation is thought to increase oxidative stress and damage muscle tissue. Wheat germ oil is a natural unrefined vegetable oil. It is an excellent source of vitamin E, octacosanol, linoleic and linolenic essential fatty acids, which may be beneficial in neutralizing the free oxygen radicals. The present study was designed to investigate the efficacy of wheat germ oil, on radiation-induced oxidative damage in rat\'s skeletal muscle. Wheat germ oil was supplemented orally via gavages to rats at a dose of 54 mg/ kg body weight/day for 14 successive days pre- and 7 post-exposure to 5 Gy (one shot dose) of whole body gamma irradiation. Animals were sacrificed 7, 14 and 21 days post radiation exposure. The results revealed that whole body γ-irradiation of rats induces oxidative stress in skeletal muscles obvious by significant elevation in the level of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) associated with significant decreases in the content of reduced glutathione (GSH), as well as decreases in superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) activities. Irradiated rats showed, also, significant decreases in creatine phosphokinase (CPK), glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G-6-PD) activities. Furthermore, total iron, total copper and total calcium levels were significantly increased in skeletal muscles of irradiated rats group compared to control group. Wheat germ oil treated-irradiated rats showed significantly less severe damage and remarkable improvement in all the measured parameters, compared to irradiated rats. It could be concluded that wheat germ oil by attenuating radiation-induced oxidative stress might play a role in maintaining skeletal muscle integrity.

Keywords: Wheat germ oil, Gamma Radiation, Oxidative Stress, Muscles, Mitochondria

Egyptian Journal of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Vol. 26 (2) 2008: pp. 101-118

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eISSN: 1687-1502