Amino Acids

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Protective effect of taurine against doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity in rats: echocardiographical and histological findings

  • Veysel Özgür BarışEmail author
  • Esra Gedikli
  • Nilgün Yersal
  • Sevda Müftüoğlu
  • Ayşen Erdem
Original Article


Doxorubicin (DOXO) may cause serious cardiotoxic effects that limit its use as an antineoplastic agent. We aimed to evaluate the protective role of taurine (TAU), a beta amino acid with antioxidant activity, against DOXO-induced cardiotoxicity in a rat model. Thirty-one male Sprague–Dawley rats (300–400 g) were randomized into four groups: control (n = 7, intraperitoneal [ip] saline for 14 days), TAU (n = 8, 150 mg/kg body weight TAU ip for 14 days), DOXO (n = 8, 25 mg/kg body weight DOXO ip on 12th, 13th, and 14th days), and DOXO + TAU (n = 8, TAU for 14 days and DOXO on 12th, 13th, and 14th days). The left ventricular functions were evaluated on 15th day by echocardiography. The heart tissues were then excised for histological evaluation. In DOXO group, left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), fractional shortening (FS), and mitral lateral annulus (s') velocity were significantly lower, and the left ventricular end-diastolic and end-systolic diameters (LVEDD, LVESD) were significantly higher than control group (p < 0.05), indicating a significant deterioration in left ventricular functions. However, in comparison to DOXO group, LVESD, LVEDD, LVEF, FS, and s' were significantly improved in DOXO + TAU group (p < 0.05). On histological evaluation, contrary to the normal cellular structure of cardiomyocytes in control and TAU groups, DOXO group showed increased nuclear or cytoplasmic changes and infiltrative cell proliferation (p < 0.001), which were remarkably reduced in DOXO + TAU group (p < 0.001). TAU treatment has a protective effect against DOXO-induced cardiotoxicity on echocardiographical and histological evaluation. For common use of TAU to prevent DOXO-induced cardiotoxicity, our findings should be confirmed by clinical studies.


Doxorubicin Cardiotoxicity Taurine Heart failure Malignancy 



We thank to Ersin Fadıllıoğlu MD, Davut Singer MD for the experiments.


The study was not funded.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Informed consent

This research involves only animal participants; therefore informed consent was not needed.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of CardiologyGülhane Research and Education HospitalAnkaraTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Physiology, Faculty of MedicineHacettepe UniversityAnkaraTurkey
  3. 3.Department of Histology, Faculty of MedicineHacettepe UniversityAnkaraTurkey

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