Researchers at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) have found that a compound present in green tea is effective in reducing kidney toxicity and damage induced by anti-cancer drug cisplatin.
This research, according to experts, may lead to the discovery of a new drug which can combat the ill-effects of cisplatin, a widely used chemotherapy drug for treatment of cancer.
“The research study has evaluated the usefulness of epicatechin gallate (ECG), a polyphenolic compound obtained from green tea, in preventing the damage of kidneys induced by cisplatin. Side-effects of cisplatin may include nephrotoxicity and life-threatening damaged kidneys.
“This identification has the potential to be developed into a therapeutic drug to counter the side-effects of cisplatin,” said Dr Y K Gupta, Head of Department (Pharmacology), AIIMS. The study by AIIMS professor Jagriti Bhatia from the Pharmacology department and her team was published in ‘Laboratory Investigations’ journal recently.
“Approximately 30% of the treated patients may develop nephrotoxicity after receiving an initial dose of cisplatin. Cisplatin causes production of free radicals inside cells in kidney which leads to oxidative stress and inflammation. “The therapeutic procedures such as vigorous hydration with normal saline and forced diuresis have limited efficacy in reducing kidney damage. Further, at present no specific drug is available which can prevent or attenuate the kidney damage due to cisplatin,” said Bhatia.
“In our study, we observed that ECG obtained from green tea significantly reduced kidney injury due to cisplatin. It was most effective at the dose of 5 mg/kg and was administered to rats through injection for 10 days. Further, ECG reduced inflammation and cell death (apoptosis) in rats,” she said.