Ameliorative effects of l-carnitine on rats raised on a diet supplemented with lead acetate.
Saudi J Biol Sci. 2017 Sep ;24(6):1410-1417. Epub 2016 Sep 1. PMID: 28855839
Lead intoxication has been a major health hazard in humans. It affects people at all ages. Its toxicity is associated with various organs of the body and affects different metabolic pathways. Based on histological data, l-carnitine reduced the severity of tissue damage produced as a result of exposure of rats to lead acetate. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the underlying mechanism of protection offered by l-carnitine against lead acetate intoxication using male Sprague-Dawley rats. Forty male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into four groups with ten rats in each. The first group (G1) served as the control group and animals received standard diet only. The second group (G2) received lead acetate in their diet. The third group (G3) was the l-carnitine treated group and received the normal standard diet supplemented with l-carnitine. While the fourth group (G4) had a diet supplemented with both lead acetate and l-carnitine. At the end of each experiment, blood (serum and whole blood) were collected from each animal and analyzed for the following parameters: serum testosterone levels, serum nitric oxide and serum malondialdehyde. This is in addition to looking at the enzymatic activities of two important enzymes (superoxide dismutase and catalase) and on (glutathione reductase) which are indicative of the antioxidant activities in the whole blood. The results indicated that l-carnitine will counteract the undesirable effects of lead intoxication. It exerted its antioxidant potential by reducing the production of ROS and scavenging free radicals by maintaining and protecting the level of the of antioxidant enzymes SOD, CAT and glutathione peroxidase. Conclusion:l-Carnitine may play an important role in reversing the undesirable effects of lead intoxication. Future studies should be conducted to see whether such an effect is applicable in humans exposed to lead poising.