The protective effect of curcumin on the diabetic rat kidney: A stereological, electron microscopic and immunohistochemical study

Ulubay M., Alkan I., Yurt K. K., Kaplan S.

ACTA HISTOCHEMICA, vol.122, no.2, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 122 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.acthis.2019.151486
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Aerospace Database, Communication Abstracts, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Metadex, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Keywords: Diabetes mellitus, Diabetic nephropathy, Curcumin, Stereology, Histopathology, NEPHROPATHY, MODEL, INJURY
  • Ondokuz Mayıs University Affiliated: Yes


The prevalence of diabetes in the world is increasing rapidly. Kidney diseases are among the most common medical disorders. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of curcumin on the diabetic kidney. Thirty-five female Wistar albino rats were divided into seven groups. No procedure was performed on the Cont group. The Sham group received corn oil via gavage for 14 days. The curcumin (Curc) group received 30-mg/kg curcumin for 14 days, while the diabetes mellitus (DM) group received 50-mg/kg streptozotocin (STZ) in a single dose intraperitoneally. The DM + curcumin 1 (DC1) group received 30 mg/kg curcumin for 14 days, seven days after the application of STZ, while the DM + curcumin 2 (DC2) received 30 mg/kg curcumin for 14 days, 21 days after the application of STZ, and the DM + curcumin 3 (DC3) group received single-dose STZ at the same time as the application of 30 mg/kg curcumin for 14 days. Medulla, cortex, tubule, and glomerulus volume ratios were calculated using stereological techniques. Cortex volumes in the Sham and DM groups were significantly lower than in the Cont group (p < 0.05). The cortex volume in the DC3 group was also significantly lower than in the Curc group (p < 0.05). Medullary volume was significantly higher in the DC3 group compared to the DM group (p < 0.05). Curcumin was determined to exhibit a protective effect on the diabetic kidney since the glomerulus in the curcumin-exposed group exhibited a well-protected structure following experimentally induced diabetes based on light and electron microscopic analysis findings. These findings suggest that curcumin used following experimentally induced diabetes exhibits protective effects on the diabetic kidney.