Effects of the free radical scavenger dimethyl sulphoxide on experimental normothermic ischaemia of the liver

Antonio Chiappa, Masatoshi Makuuchi, Andrew P. Zbar, Francesca Biella, Massimo Bellomi, Roberto Biffi, Emilio Bertani, Aldo Vezzoni, Cristiano Crosta, Bruno Andreoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background/Aims: This study assessed the effects of intermittent or continuous hepatic ischaemia and reperfusion with or without dimethyl sulphoxide (DMSO) pre-treatment in a rat ischaemic model. Methods: One hundred and eighty rats were divided into three groups undergoing hepatic ischaemia of a total duration of 60, 90 and 120 min. Each group of rats was subdivided to receive either a continuous Pringle manoeuvre or intermittent liver pedicle clamping of 30 or 15 min. Ten minutes before ischaemia induction, 10 rats from each group were pre-treated with DMSO (500 mg/kg, b.w.) intravenously. Results: With continuous hepatic pedicle clamping, survival rates inversely correlated with the duration of ischaemia, with greater survival in the intermittently clamped groups (p <0.05). DMSO pre-treatment did not affect survival but resulted in a significant reduction in liver enzyme (aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase) release on the first postoperative day following total ischaemic times of 90 min or greater (p <0.05). After 120 min of total ischaemia, DMSO pre-treatment resulted in higher preservation of adenosine 5)-triphosphate liver content (p <0.05). Conclusion: DMSO may be used to prolong tolerance to inflow occlusion and to limit the adverse effects of ischaemia and reperfusion cycles in an experimental hepatic ischaemia model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)238-245
Number of pages8
JournalDigestive Surgery
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • Dimethyl sulphoxide
  • Free radical
  • Hepatic ischaemia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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