Thymoquinone reduces mitochondrial damage and death of cardiomyocytes induced by clozapine.


Naunyn Schmiedebergs Arch Pharmacol. 2021 May 3. Epub 2021 May 3. PMID: 33937934

Abstract Title: 

Thymoquinone reduces mitochondrial damage and death of cardiomyocytes induced by clozapine.


The generation of a reactive nitrenium ion by microsomal/mitochondrial cytochrome P450 (CYPs) from clozapine (CLZ) has been suggested as the main cause of cardiotoxicity by this drug. Previous studies indicated that thymoquinone (TQ) as an active constituent of Nigella sativa has pharmacological effects such as antioxidant, reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger, and inhibitory effect on CYPs enzymes. Therefore, we hypothesized that TQ with these pharmacological effects can reduce CLZ-induced toxicity in isolated cardiomyocytes and mitochondria. Rat left ventricular cardiomyocytes and mitochondria were isolated by collagenase perfusion and differential centrifugation respectively. Then, isolated cardiomyocytes and mitochondria were pretreated with different concentrations of TQ (1, 5, and 10 μmol/l) for 30 min and then followed by exposure to CLZ (50 μmol/l) for 6 h. After 6 h of incubation, using biochemical evaluations and flow cytometric analysis, the parameters of cellular toxicity including cytotoxicity, the level of oxidized/reduced glutathione (GSH/GSSG), malondialdehyde(MDA), reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation, lysosomal membrane integrity, mitochondria membrane potential (ΔΨm) collapse, and mitochondrial toxicity including succinate dehydrogenase (SDH) activity and mitochondrial swelling were analyzed. We observed a significant toxicity in isolated cardiomyocytes and mitochondria after exposure with CLZ which was related to ROS formation, oxidative stress, GSH depletion, lysosomal and mitochondrial damages, and mitochondrial dysfunction and swelling, while TQ pretreatment reverted the above toxic effect of CLZ on isolated cardiomyocytes and mitochondria. Our results indicate that TQ prevents and reverses CLZ-induced cytotoxicity and mitochondrial damages in isolated cardiomyocytes and mitochondria, providing an experimental basis for clinical treatment on CLZ-induced cardiotoxicity.

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