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Free Radic Biol Med. 2002 Jun 15;32(12):1283-92.

Nontoxic heat shock protein coinducer BRX-220 protects against acute pancreatitis in rats.

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  • 1First Department of Medicine, University of Szeged, Hungary.



Nontoxic heat shock protein (HSP) inducer compounds open up promising therapeutic possibilities by activating one of the natural and highly conserved defense mechanisms of the organism.


In the present experiments, we examined the effects of a HSP coinducer drug-candidate, BRX-220, on the cholecystokinin-octapeptide (CCK)-induced acute pancreatitis in rats.


Male Wistar rats weighing 240 to 270 g were divided into two groups. In group B, 20 mg/kg BRX-220 was administered orally, followed by 75 microg/kg CCK subcutaneously three times, after 1, 3, and 5 h. This whole procedure was repeated for 5 d. The animals in group slashed circleB received physiological saline orally instead of BRX-220, but otherwise the protocol was the same as in group B. The rats were exsanguinated through the abdominal aorta 12 h after the last administration of CCK. We determined the serum amylase activity, the plasma trypsinogen activation peptide concentration, the pancreatic weight/body weight ratio, the DNA and total protein contents of the pancreas, the levels of pancreatic HSP60 and HSP72, the activities of pancreatic amylase, lipase, trypsinogen, and free radical scavenger enzymes (superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase), the degree of lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, and the reduced glutathione level. Histopathological investigation of the pancreas was also performed in all cases.


Repeated CCK treatment resulted in the typical laboratory and morphological changes of experimentally induced pancreatitis. The pancreatic levels of HSP60 and HSP72 were significantly increased in the animals treated with BRX-220. In group B, the pancreatic total protein content and the amylase and trypsinogen activities were significantly higher vs. group slashed circleB. The plasma trypsinogen activation peptide concentration, and the pancreatic lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, and the activity of Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase were significantly decreased in group B vs. group slashed circleB, whereas the glutathione peroxidase activity was increased. The morphological damage in group B was significantly lower than that in group slashed circleB.


The HSP coinducer BRX-220, administered for 5 d, has a protective effect against CCK-induced acute pancreatitis.

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