Role of aqueous extract of saffron in ameliorating effect of sofosbuvir on the cerebellar cortex in rat.
Sofosbuvir is a promising antiviral drug against chronic hepatitis C virus. Although it is characterized by its high efficacy, its adverse effects on nervous tissue are still unclear. Saffron is known for its neuroprotective property. This is a biochemical, histological and immunohistochemical study of the effect of sofosbuvir on the cerebellar cortex of rat and the possible ameliorating role of saffron’s aqueous extract. Twenty-four adult male Wistar albino rats were equally divided into 4 groups; control, saffron extract-treated, sofosbuvir-treated (41.1mg/kg/day for 6weeks) and group concomitantly treated with saffron extract and sofosbuvir. Sofosbuvir-treated group recorded a significant increase in cerebellar malondialdehyde level coupling with a significant decrease in tissue glutathione and superoxide dismutase. Light microscopy revealed reduced number of Purkinje cells. The granular layer depicted many granular cells and Bergmann astrocytes with nuclear and cytoplasmic alterations. Electron microscopy revealed disorganized molecular layer with disarranged myelinated axons and disrupted mitochondria. Few shrunken Purkinje cells showed electron-dense cytoplasm and rarefied nuclei, indistinct nuclear envelope and dilated perinuclear space, areas of vacuolated cytoplasm, fragmented rough endoplasmic reticulum and few dark mitochondria. Some axons with tiny mitochondria were detected. A significant upregulation in immunohistochemical expression of GFAP-positive astrocytes was recorded. Concomitant administration of saffron extract significantly improved all studied parameters. Saffron extract is beneficial in ameliorating sofosbuvir-induced cerebellar morphological changes mainly through its antioxidant and neuroprotective properties. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.