Protective effects of Ligustrum lucidum fruit extract on acute butylated hydroxytoluene-induced oxidative stress in rats.
Nuzhenzi, the fruit of Ligustrum lucidum Ait. (Oleaceae), is commonly used as tonic for kidney and liver in the traditional Chinese medicine prescription. The present study aimed to investigate the antioxidant activities of ethanol extract of Ligustrum lucidum fruits (ELL) and its effects on butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT)-induced oxidative stress in rats. Results showed that ELL possesses weak antioxidant activities. Compared to the BHT (1000 mg/kg)-treated group, results showed that ELL at 250, 500 and 1000 mg/kg significantly reduced the levels of blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum glutamic pyruvic transaminase (sGPT), glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase (sGOT), alkaline phosphatase (sALP), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), triglyceride (TG) and creatinine (Cr), as well as LDH in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF). It also significantly decreased the level of lipid peroxides in liver and lung. In addition, ELL significantly enhanced the levels of catalase (CAT), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) in these organs. Histopathological evaluation of the tissues revealed that ELL reduced the incidence of lung lesions, while the liver and kidney tissues were not affected by BHT administration. Taken together, the protective effect of ELL against acute BHT-induced oxidative stress in rats could be through the upregulation of antioxidant enzymes.