Salutary effects of N-acetylcysteine on apoptotic damage in a rat model of testicular torsion

Seyedmehdi Payabvash, Amirali Hassanzadeh Salmasi, Saman Kiumehr, Seyed Mohammad Tavangar, Bardia Nourbakhsh, Seyed Hamed Faghihi, Ahmad Reza Dehpour
Urologia Internationalis 2007, 79 (3): 248-54

INTRODUCTION: Numerous studies performed in recent years have shown protective effects of N-acetylcysteine (NAC) on cardiac and renal tissue damage following ischemia/reperfusion injury. We assessed the effectiveness of systemic administration of NAC, at a therapeutic dose, in a rat model of a 1-hour 720-degree testicular torsion/detorsion.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into five groups, 14 animals in each: group 1 animals underwent sham operation as the control group; group 2 rats underwent torsion/detorsion and received saline injection, and the animals in groups 3, 4, and 5 received intraperitoneal injections of 150 mg/kg NAC 30 min before torsion, after torsion, and after detorsion, respectively. Markers of oxidative stress as well as germ cell apoptosis indices were assessed 4 and 24 h after detorsion, respectively.

RESULTS: The apoptosis indices were significantly higher in group 2 as compared with the control group. Four hours after detorsion, the testicular level of lipid peroxidation was significantly increased, and antioxidant enzyme activities were significantly decreased in group 2 as compared with the controls. Administration of NAC either 30 min before or after torsion (groups 3 and 4) significantly improved the germ cell apoptosis indices and oxidant/antioxidant balance. Administration of NAC after detorsion had no significant effect on biochemical markers or germ cell apoptosis.

CONCLUSION: Administration of NAC prior to torsion or detorsion, but not after detorsion, induces protective effects against ischemia/reperfusion injury in a rat model of testicular torsion.

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