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Gamma-Glutamyl Cysteine Attenuates Tissue Damage and Enhances Tissue Regeneration in a rat Model of Lead-Induced Nephrotoxicity

Salama, Samir A., Arab, Hany H., Maghrabi, Ibrahim A., Hassan, Memy H., AlSaeed, Mohammed S.
Biological trace element research 2016 v.173 no.1 pp. 96-107
animal models, antioxidant activity, apoptosis, blood serum, caspase-3, catalase, creatinine, enzyme activity, gene expression regulation, glutathione, glutathione peroxidase, histopathology, inflammation, interleukin-1beta, kidneys, lead, lipids, necrosis, nephrotoxicity, oxidation, oxidative stress, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, protective effect, rats, renal function, superoxide dismutase, tissue repair, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, urea, weight gain
Lead is a biohazardous metal that is commonly involved in human illness including renal injury. Although it is a non-redox reactive metal, lead-induced renal injury is largely based on oxidative stress. The current work aimed at exploring the possible protective effect of γ-glutamyl cysteine (γGC) against lead-induced renal injury. Rats were allocated to normal and γGC control groups, lead-treated group, and lead and γGC-treated group. γGC alleviated lead-induced renal injury as evidenced by attenuation of histopathological aberration, amelioration of oxidative injury as demonstrated by significant reduction in lipid and protein oxidation, elevation of total antioxidant capacity, and glutathione level. The activity of antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) was significantly elevated. γGC significantly decreased levels of the proinflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin (IL)-6, and IL-1β and the activity of the apoptotic marker caspase-3. In addition, γGC reduced kidney lead content, enhanced weight gain, and improved renal function as demonstrated by reduced serum levels of urea and creatinine. Importantly, γGC upregulated proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) expression, denoting enhanced renal regenerative capacity. Together, our findings highlight evidence for alleviating effects of γGC against lead-induced renal injury that is potentially mediated through diminution of oxidative tissue injury, reduction of inflammatory response, attenuation of apoptosis, and enhancement of renal regenerative capacity.