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Transplant Proc. 2010 Apr;42(3):744-7. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2010.03.017.

Curcumin attenuates airway hyperreactivity induced by ischemia-reperfusion of the pancreas in rats.

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Department of Nursing and Management, Jen-Teh Junior College of Medicine, Miouli County, Taiwan.



Ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) of the rat pancreas induces acute pancreatitis with a systemic inflammatory response. Activated inflammatory cells are sequestered in the lung, and the consequent respiratory burst may increase airway reactivity. In this study, we characterized the effect of the antioxidant curcumin on airway hyperreactivity induced by pancreatic I/R.


Ischemia of the pancreas was induced by clamping the gastroduodenal and the splenic artery for 2 hours followed by reperfusion for 6 hours. The pulmonary function data of Penh, a measurement of airway resistance, were used to show the airway responses to a methacholine challenge. The blood concentration of oxygen radicals, nitric oxide, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNFalpha) were measured after pancreatic I/R. mRNA expressions of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and TNFalpha in lung tissues were measured after pancreatic I/R. Pretreatment with curcumin (20 mg/kg) was administered by intraperitoneal injection 2 hours before pancreatic I/R.


The protocol resulted in significant elevations of the blood concentrations of amylase, hydroxyl radical, nitric oxide, TNFalpha, and white cells among the I/R group. iNOS and TNFalpha mRNA expressions also significantly increased in lung tissues. Pulmonary function data showed that pancreatic I/R induced significant increases in responses to methacholine challenge: Penh increased significantly in the I/R group when compared with the sham group. Pretreatment with curcumin significantly attenuated the inflammatory, oxidative, and nitrosative responses and lung tissue iNOS and TNFalpha expressions. Curcumin also attenuated airway reactivity to methacholine challenge.


I/R of the pancreas induced systemic inflammatory responses with respiratory burst, nitrosative stress, and hyperresponses in the airways. Curcumin, which has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, significantly attenuated the inflammatory responses and airway hyperreactivity induced by pancreatic I/R.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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