Objective 6-Mercaptopurine (6-MP) is an oral purin analogue which inhibits the purine synthesis via being converted to ribonucleotide. 6-MP is being widely used in cancer chemotherapy and immunosuppressive therapy. The major side effects which limit its clinical practice are hepatotoxicity and bone marrow suppression. In this study, the protective effect of Capparis ovata (CAP) which is an antioxidant plant, against the hepatotoxicity induced by 6-MP is investigated.
Methods Thirty-eight paediatric rats were seperated into four groups. We administered saline solution to the control group (C) (n:8), 6-Mercaptopurine to the second group (6-MP) (n:10), Capparis ovata to the third group (CAP) (n:10) and 6-Mercaptopurine plus Capparis ovata to the last group (6-MP+CAP) (n:10) for 14 days, respectively. On the fifteenth day, we measured complete blood count and ALT, AST for hepatotoxicity. Glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels were measured to show oxidative stress. All analyses were made with SPSS program and p < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results Transaminase levels were high, thrombocyte and leukocyte levels were low in 6-MP group than control group. There was no difference between 6-MP+CAP and control group for transaminase levels and leukocyte numbers. Superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, catalase levels were low and malondialdehyde level was high in both blood and tissue samples of 6-MP group when compared to 6-MP+CAP group (p < 0.05).
Conclusion These findings suggest that C. ovata may prevent against some haematological and biochemical side-effects induced by 6-MP in rats. The histopathologically proven hepatotoxicity and bone marrow suppression induced by 6-MP via increasing the lipid peroxidation, synthesis of free oxygen species and decreasing the antioxidant enzyme activity may be prevented concomitant CAP administration. This study, first in the literature, examined the beneficial effects of C. ovata administration against 6-MP chemotherapy and will hopefully be a source for the future projects.