The protective effects of tacrolimus on rat uteri exposed to ischemia reperfusion injury A biochemical and histopathological evaluation

Tacrolimus has protective effects against uterine ischemia-reperfusion injury induced by distal abdominal aortic occlusion, and these cytoprotective effects may be due to its antioxidant and antiinflammatory properties.


Sadik Sahin, M.D., Ozlem Bingol Ozakpinar, Ph.D., Koray Ak, M.D., Mustafa Eroglu, M.D., Merve Acikel, M.Sc., Sermin Tetik, Ph.D., Fikriye Uras, Ph.D., Sule Cetinel, M.D.

Volume 101, Issue 4, Pages 1176-1182



To evaluate the effects of the immunosuppressant tacrolimus as an antioxidant and analyze the histopathologic changes in rat uteri exposed to experimental ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury.


Experimental study.


Experimental surgery laboratory in a university.


Twenty-eight female rats exposed to experimentally induced uterine I/R injury.


Group I: control group; group II: uterine I/R injury–induced group; group III: pre-ischemia tacrolimus group; group IV: post-ischemia tacrolimus group.

Main Outcome Measure(s):

Uterine tissue malondialdehyde (MDA) level as a marker of lipid peroxidation and glutathione (GSH) level and superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) activities as markers of tissue antioxidant capacity; histopathologic examination of all uterine rat tissue.


Following aortic I/R injury, MDA levels were significantly increased whereas GSH levels and CAT and SOD activities were found to be decreased compared with control animals. MDA levels were found to recover prominently after the administration of tacrolimus in both groups III and IV. Administration of tacrolimus improved uterine GSH levels and CAT activity in the tacrolimus-treated groups.


Our results indicate that tacrolimus reduces oxidative damage in rat uteri exposed to I/R injury induced by distal abdominal aortic occlusion. Histologic evaluation reveals that tacrolimus attenuates the inflammatory response and protects the tissue damage induced by I/R injury.

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