Altered regulation of nitric oxide-cyclic guanosine monophosphate (NO-cGMP) is present in liver cirrhosis. Several experimental studies have shown that selective modulation of NO metabolism in the liver reduces intrahepatic resistance and portal pressure in cirrhosis. This preliminary study investigated whether selective inhibition of phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5), which prevents the conversion of cGMP to 5'-GMP, as well as non-selective inhibition of PDE isozymes could ameliorate hepatic toxicity induced by paracetamol (PCM).
PCM (250 mg/kg, i.p.) was administered to induce hepatotoxicity. Control rats received physiological saline (10 mL/kg, p.o.), while sildenafil (a selective PDE-5 inhibitor) and aminophylline (a non-selective PDE inhibitor) were administered separately at 10 mg/kg p.o. to PCM-treated rats.
PCM hepatotoxicity, characterized by elevation of aspartate and alanine aminotransferases, hepatic degeneration, and centrilobular necrosis, was attenuated by both PDE inhibitors. Sildenafil and aminophylline significantly (p<0>
These preliminary data suggest that pharmacological inhibition of PDE isozymes may be a useful strategy in protecting against PCM hepatic toxicity.