ORIGINAL RESEARCH
Efficacy of N-Acetylcysteine on Aflatoxicosis in Rabbits
Y. Çam1, G. Eraslan2, A. Atasever3, M. Eren4, B.C. Liman2, N. Şeybek2
 
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1Departments of Internal Medicine, 2Pharmacology and Toxicology, 3Pathology, 4Biochemistry, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Erciyes, Kayseri, Turkey
 
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2008;17(2):189–197
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ABSTRACT
The aim of this study was to determine the clinical, hematological, biochemical and pathological findings, and to evaluate the efficiency of n-acetylcysteine (NA C) in experimentally induced aflatoxicosis in rabbits. Our study divided 42 rabbits into 6 groups. The groups received the following treatment: Group 1: control group without treatment, Group 2: aflatoxin (AF) (0.4 mg/kg body weight (bw)), Group 3: AF (0.4 mg/kg bw) plus NA C (250 mg/kg bw), Group 4: AF (0.4 mg/kg bw) plus NA C (500 mg/kg bw), Group 5: NA C (250 mg/kg bw), Group 6: NA C (500 mg/kg bw). N-acetylcysteine was administered intramuscularly on day 1 following the administration of AF for 5 days. At the beginning of the study and on days 1, 4 and 7 following the administration of AF, blood samples were collected for haematological and biochemical analysis. Necropsy and histopathological examination were performed. Clinical signs were observed starting from day 1 following the administration of AF. The signs of toxicosis included decreased feed and water consumption, dullness, dehydration, emaciation and convulsion. Four rabbits died in Group 2 and 2 rabbits died in Groups 3 and 4 treated with NA C. During the study, white blood cell (WBC) counts, mean platelet volume (MPV), mean corpuscular volume (MCV) and red blood cell distribution width (RDW ) values, serum urea levels and aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (AL T), alkaline phosphatase (AL P) and gamma glutamyl transpeptidase (GG T) activities increased whereas red blood cell (RBC) and platelet counts, hemoglobin (Hgb) and hematocrit (Hct) values, total protein, total cholesterol, triglyceride and glucose levels decreased for Group 2 given only AF compared with controls. These parameters approximated to control levels for Groups 3 and 4 after the treatment with NA C. Histopathological examination showed that the main affected organ was liver. Lipid degeneration, destruction and fibrosis in the liver were detected for Group 2. Histopathological changes in the liver were observed to be less severe for Groups 3 and 4. The study demonstrated that administration of NA C might be useful for the treatment of aflatoxicosis in rabbits.
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