2005 Volume 28 Issue 7 Pages 1165-1171
Cardiac toxicity is a major adverse effect caused by doxorubicin (DOX) therapy. Many recent studies have shown that DOX toxicity involves generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Although protection or alleviation of DOX toxicity can be achieved by administration of antioxidant vitamins such as ascorbic acid and vitamin E, their cardioprotective effect remains controversial. Thus alternative naturally occurring antioxidants may potentially be candidates for antioxidant therapy. In this study, we investigated the antioxidative and cytoprotective effects of Phyllanthus urinaria (PU) against DOX toxicity using H9c2 cardiac myoblasts. The total antioxidant capacity of PU (1 mg/ml) was 5306.75±461.62 FRAP value (μM). DOX IC50 values were used to evaluate the cytoprotective effects of PU ethanolic extract (1 or 10 μg/ml) in comparison with those of ascorbic acid (VIT C, 100 μM) and N-acetylcysteine (NAC, 100 μM). PU treatments (1 or 10 μg/ml) dose dependently caused rightward DOX IC50 shifts of 2.8- and 8.5-fold, respectively while treatments with VIT C and NAC increased DOX IC50 by 3.3- and 4.2-fold, respectively. Additionally, lipid peroxidation and caspase-3 activity were parameters used to evaluate cytoprotective effect. All antioxidants completely inhibited cellular lipid peroxidation and caspase-3 activation induced by DOX (1 μM). Endogenous antioxidant defense such as total glutathione (tGSH), catalase and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity was also modulated by the antioxidants. PU treatment alone dose dependently increased tGSH, and this effect was retained in the presence of DOX. Similar effect was observed in the assessment of catalase and SOD enzyme activity. The nuclear factor κB (NFκB) transcription factor assay demonstrated that all antioxidants significantly inhibited DOX-induced NFκB activation. Our results suggest that PU protection against DOX cardiotoxicity was mediated through multiple pathways and this plant may serve as an alternative source of antioxidants for prevention of DOX cardiotoxicity.