Introduction: Cyclosporin A (CsA) is a potent immunosuppressive drug. However, it has adverse effects that include elevation of plasma low-density lipoprotein (LDL). This study was designed to determine the effect of garlic on CsA-induced hyperlipidemia in male rats.
Materials and Methods: Baseline serum blood samples from forty 10-month-old, male Wistar rats were obtained. They received intraperitoneal (IP) injection of CsA (25 mg/kg) for 28 days. Blood samples were again obtained after the 28-day treatment. Sixteen of 40 rats showed increased serum LDL levels. These 16 were divided into 2 groups of 8 rats each. In the first (experimental) group, 8 rats received garlic (tablets, 400 mg/d), CsA (25 mg/kg IP), and regular diet for 28 days. In the second (control) group, 8 rats received the same regimen without the garlic tablets. At the end of the experiment, blood samples were taken from animals in both groups, and LDL levels were assessed.
Results: The mean baseline LDL level in animals in the control group was 17.75 Â± 4.1 mg/dL. This increased to 21.5 Â± 1.6 mg/dL after 28 days of CsA administration. After 28 more days, the mean LDL level increased to 25.4 Â± 4.9 mg/dL (P = .004). In animals in the experimental group, the baseline LDL level was 23.8 Â± 3.7 mg/dL, which increased to 31.3 Â± 1.6 mg/dL after the first 28 days (P < .001). After the second 28 days, it decreased to 26.0 Â± 4.8 mg/dL (P = .06), and among 4 animals, the LDL level decreased more than 49%.
Conclusion: In a Wistar rat model, animals given cyclosporin A subsequently treated with garlic demonstrated reduced LDL levels compared with controls. This treatment may be useful in patients receiving organ transplantations.