Can Pumpkin Save us of Doxorubicin Induced Cardiotoxicity?

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Milana Bosanac; Jelena Amidzic; Maja Stefanovic; Jelena Radic; Ivana Kolarov-Bjelobrk; Stefan Janicic; Zdenka Gojkovic; Bojana Lazic; Dejan Djokanovic; Aleksandra Misan; Biljana Cvetkovic; Alena Stupar; Nikola Martic & Bojana Andrejic Visnjic


Doxorubicin (DOX) is one of the drugs necessary for the treatment of the 10 most common types of cancer. The leading adverse effect limiting clinical use of DOX is cardiotoxicity. Given that literature data indicate a protective role of carotenoids in doxorubicin-induced toxicity, in our study we compared the cardioprotective effect of a mixture of pumpkin carotenoids and a commercially available antioxidant preparation. Animals were distributed in 8 groups (Control – S; NADES – N; Doxorubicin – Dox; Carotenoids – Car; CardiofortIN – CF; NADES-Doxorubicin – N-Dox; Carotenoids-Doxorubicin – Car-Dox; CardiofortIN-Doxorubicin – CF-Dox). Histological sections were stained with the hematoxylin-eosin (HE) and analyzed for the presence of myocardial damage by doxorubicin damage score (DDS). From the heart tissue homogenate were determined the intensity of lipid peroxidation and specific antioxidative enzyme activity (superoxide dismutase; catalase; glutathione S-transferase; glutathione peroxidase). In Car-DOX and CF-DOX groups, lipid peroxidation is significantly reduced compared to DOX group. Pretreatment of animals with carotenoids and in lesser extent with CardiofortIN led to higher antioxidative enzymes activity, compared to DOX group. Pretreated with carotenoids, only 50 % of animals had some degree of myocardial damage, and no animals had extensive damage. CardiofortIN pretreatment showed less protective effect. Pretreatment with carotenoid extract, reduced DDS significantly, so Car-DOX group has changes equivalent to mild myocardial damage. Although CardiofortIN pretreatment lowered DDS score values, animals still had moderate level of myocardium damage. This in vivo study and its findings indicate that carotenoids extracted from pumpkin may be a promising cardioprotective agent against doxorubicin induced cardiotoxicity, at least in part mediated through inhibition of DOX-induced oxidative stress.

KEY WORDS: Cardiotoxicity; Doxorubicin; Carotenoids; CardiofortIN.

How to cite this article

BOSANAC, M.; AMIDZIC, J.; STEFANOVIC, M.; RADIC, J.; KOLAROV-BJELOBRK, I.; JANICIC, S.; GOJKOVIC, Z.; LAZIC, B.; DJOKANOVIC, D.; MISAN, A.; CVETKOVIC, B.; STUPAR, A.; MARTIC, N. & ANDREJIC, V. B. Can pumpkin save us of doxorubicin induced cardiotoxicity? Int. J. Morphol., 41(1):231-236, 2023.