Intestinal ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury constitutes a severe disorder, in great part resulting from oxidative stress. Because sulforaphane and albumin were shown to increase antioxidant defenses, we evaluated the therapeutic potential of these agents in an experimental model of I/R injury.
Wistar rats were used to establish a model of intestinal I/R (35 min of ischemia, followed by 45 min of reperfusion) and were treated with albumin (5 mL/kg), sulforaphane (500 μg/kg), or saline intravenously before reperfusion. Animals that were not subjected to I/R served as the sham (laparotomy only) and control groups. Blood samples were analyzed for arterial gas, reactive oxygen species, and reactive nitrogen species using different molecular fluorescent probes. After euthanasia, ileal samples were collected for analysis, including histopathology, immunohistochemistry, terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT)-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling assays, and lactic dehydrogenase measurement.
Oxygenation status and hemodynamic parameters were uniform during the experiment. The sulforaphane- or albumin-treated groups showed reduced concentrations of reactive oxygen species (P < 0.04), nitric oxide (P < 0.001), and peroxynitrite (P = 0.001), compared with I/R injury untreated animals. Treatment with sulforaphane or albumin resulted in the preservation of goblet cells (P < 0.03), reductions in histopathologic scores (P < 0.01), macrophage density (P < 0.01), iNOS expression (P < 0.004), NF-kappa B activation (P < 0.05), and apoptotic rates (P < 0.04) in the mucosa and a reduction in the concentration of lactic dehydrogenase (P < 0.04), more pronounced with sulforaphane.
Attenuation of intestinal I/R injury in this model probably reflects the antioxidative effects of systemic administration of both sulforaphane and albumin and reinforces their use in future translational research.