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J Pharmacol Pharmacother. 2012 Apr;3(2):143-8. doi: 10.4103/0976-500X.95513.

Cardiorenal benefits of early versus late cyclosporine to sirolimus conversion in a rat model.

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Laboratory of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, IBILI, Medicine Faculty, Coimbra University, Coimbra, Portugal.



To compare the cardiorenal effects of early versus late cyclosporine (CsA) to sirolimus (SRL) conversion, using a novel animal model that mimics these protocols used in the clinical practice, and focusing on blood pressure, heart rate (HR), biochemical data and heart and kidney lipid peroxidation.


The study had five groups. Six male Wistar rats in each group were used during a 9-week study protocol: control, CsA (5 mg/kg/day), SRL (1 mg/kg/day); early conversion and late conversion. Cardiorenal evaluation was assessed by biochemical data, blood pressure, HR, and heart and kidney lipid peroxidation.


As expected, CsA promoted cardiorenal impairment, viewed by development of hypertension, tachycardia, increased urea, creatine kinase, and glucose levels, as well as heart and kidney oxidative stress. SRL, as expected, promoted less cardiorenal side effects, namely those related with nephrotoxicity. In agreement, both early and late conversions from CsA to SRL produced less side-effects, namely those related to the CsA-induced nephrotoxicity.


In our model, both early and late CsA to SRL conversion promoted amelioration of the CsA -induced cardiorenal damage. However, early substitution seems to produce more benefits, in particular due to higher improvement of the cardiac profile.


Cyclosporine; cardiotoxicity; early versus late conversion; nephrotoxicity; sirolimus

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