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Folia Med (Plovdiv). 2006;48(3-4):86-9.

Gastroprotective effect of L-carnitine on indomethacin-induced gastric mucosal injury in rats: a preliminary study.

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Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Trakya University Edirne, Turkey.



Numerous studies have shown that use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is associated with various gastric mucosal lesions, collectively referred to as NSAID gastropathy, but the detailed mechanism is still not properly understood. L-carnitine, a vitamin-like substance, is a naturally occurring enzymatic antioxidant with a potent free oxygen radical quencher and scavenger capacity; it protects the biological membranes against lipid peroxidation. It has recently been shown that L-carnitine has a gastroprotective effect on gastric mucosa. To our knowledge, the role of L-carnitine on NSAIDs-induced gastric mucosal injury is undefined.


The aim of the present study was to determine the gastroprotective effect of L-carnitine on indomethacin-induced gastric mucosal lesions in the rat stomachs.


In our study, gastric mucosal injury was induced by the intragastric administration of indomethacin (30 mg/kg). L-carnitine (10, 50, 100 mg/kg) was given to rats by gavage 30 min before the indomethacin administration. The animals were killed 3 h after administration of indomethacin. The stomach of each animal was removed. Mucosal damage was evaluated with macroscopic study and histopathologically.


The intragastric administration of indomethacin induced hyperemia and hemorrhagic erosions in the rat stomachs. L-carnitine significantly prevented gastric ulcerogenesis induced by indomethacin and decreased the ulcer index macroscopically and histopathologically.


L-carnitine decreases indomethacin-induced gastric mucosal injury and this gastroprotective effect may be attributed to its well-known antioxidant effect.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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