Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

Acute hepatotoxicity of Crotalus durissus terrificus (South American rattlesnake) venom in rats

França, RFVieira, RPFerrari, EFSouza, RAOsorio, RALPrianti-Jr, ACGHyslop, SZamuner, SRCogo, JCRibeiro, W

Venom of the South American rattlesnake, Crotalus durissus terrificus (Cdt), presents myotoxic and neurotoxic outcomes, but reports on its effects on the liver are scarce. This study examined the hepatotoxicity resulting from Cdt venom administration (100, 200 and 300 µg/kg) in male Wistar rats. Animals were studies at 3, 6, 9 and 12 hours after venom injection. The hepatotoxicity was assessed through serum levels of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (AP), gamma glutamyl transferase (GGT), bilirrubin and also by histopathological evaluation. All the different concentrations of Cdt venom resulted in increased levels of hepatic enzymes, when compared with the control group, except for the 100 µg/kg dose, which presented normal levels at 9 and 12 hours after venom administration. Bilirrubin levels remained unchanged by Cdt venom. Histological analysis revealed endothelial damage, inflammatory cell infiltration, as well as sinusoidal and portal congestion. Based on these observations, we may conclude that Cdt venom causes dose- and time-dependent hepatic damage in rats, characterized by elevated hepatic enzyme levels and histological alterations.

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