Pioglitazone protects against renal ischemia-reperfusion injury by enhancing antioxidant capacity

Published:March 27, 2013DOI:



      In our previous study, we showed that pioglitazone exerts protective effects on renal ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) in mice by abrogating renal cell apoptosis. Oxidative stress due to excessive production of reactive oxygen species and subsequent lipid peroxidation plays a critical role in renal IRI. The purpose of the current study is to demonstrate the effect of pioglitazone on renal IRI by modulation of oxidative stress.

      Materials and methods

      IRI was induced by bilateral renal ischemia for 45 min followed by reperfusion. Thirty healthy male Balb/c mice were randomly assigned to one of the following groups: phosphate buffer solution (PBS) + IRI, pioglitazone + IRI, PBS + sham IRI, pioglitazone + sham IRI. Kidney function tests and kidney antioxidant activities were determined 24 h after reperfusion.


      Pretreatment with pioglitazone produced reduction in serum levels of blood urea nitrogen and creatinine caused by IRI. Pretreatment with pioglitazone before IRI resulted in a higher level of kidney enzymatic activities of superoxide dismutase, glutathione, catalase, and total antioxidant capacity than in the PBS-pretreated IRI group.


      Our results indicate that pioglitazone can provide protection for kidneys against IRI by enhancing antioxidant capacity. Therefore, pioglitazone could be a potential therapeutic approach to prevent renal IRI relevant to various clinical conditions.


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