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Journal of Applied Sciences
Year: 2013  |  Volume: 13  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 595 - 601

Effect of L-Arginine on Some Biochemical Markers of Metabolic Syndrome Associated with Brain Function in Female Wistar Rats

A.C.C. Egbuonu and L.U.S. Ezeanyika    

Abstract: Metabolic syndrome (Mes) was associated with insulin resistance and endothelial dysfunction. In particular, endothelial dysfunction was associated with a significant reduction in nitric oxide, a metabolite of L-arginine (Arg). Insulin resistance occurs following the failure of insulin to maintain glucose balance or regulate appetite via signaling in the brain. Thus, this study investigated the influence of Arg on some biochemical markers of Mes associated with the brain function and on the brain histology of female Wistar rats. Two groups of rats (n = 8) were exposed to a single dose of 60 mg kg-1 b.wt. of Arg and 3 ml kg-1 b.wt. of distilled water respectively as treated and control groups. Exposure was per oral (p.o) for twenty eight consecutive days. Exposure to Arg evoked a significant increase (p<0.01) in aspartate amino transferase (AST) activity (24.95±0.10 IU L-1) and ammonium ion (NH4+) concentration (39.58±0.16 μg mL-1) in the rats’ serum. It increased (p<0.01) the aspartate amino transferase to alanine amino transferase (AST:ALT) ratio (0.37±0.01) of the rats. Brain section of Arg-treated rats revealed degeneration, characterized by necrosis, oedema and reduction of astrocytes. AST:ALT ratio had a significant positive correlation (r = 0.01) with AST activity and NH4+ concentration. The results suggest Arg-induced adverse influence on the studied markers of Mes associated with the brain function. Hence, exposure to Arg may impair the brain function and possibly, worsen Mes related to brain function of the rats.

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