Aim: The protective effects of Ginkgo biloba phytosomes (GBP) on carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)-induced hepatotoxicity and the probable mechanism(s) involved in this protection were investigated in rats.
Methods: Liver damage was induced in Wistar rats by administering a 1:1 (v/v) mixture of CCl4 and olive oil (1 ml/kg, i.p.) once daily for 7 days. GBP at 25 mg/kg and 50 mg/kg, i.p. and reference drug silymarin (200 mg/kg, p.o.) were administered for 10 days to CCl4-treated rats, this treatment beginning 3 days prior to the commencement of CCl4 administration. The degree of protection was evaluated by determining the marker enzymes (SGOT, SGPT and SALP), albumin (Alb) and total proteins (TP). Further, the effects of GBP on lipid peroxidation (LPO), glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPX) and glutathione reductase (GR) were estimated in liver homogenates to evaluate antioxidant activity.
Results: GBP (25 and 50 mg/kg) and silymarin elicited significant hepatoprotective activity by decreasing the activities of serum marker enzymes and lipid peroxidation and elevated the levels of GSH, SOD, CAT, GPX, GR, Alb and TP in a dose-dependent manner.
Conclusion: The present findings indicate that the hepatoprotective effects of GBP against CCl4-induced oxidative damage may be due to its antioxidant and free radical-scavenging activity.