ISSN 1063-0740, Russian Journal of Marine Biology, 2007, Vol. 33, No. 3, pp. 204–206. © Pleiades Publishing, Ltd., 2007.
Original Russian Text © L.N. Sonina, M.Yu. Khotimchenko, 2007, published in Biologiya Morya.
Contamination of the air in industrial centers with
heavy metal compounds, including lead salts is an rele-
vant problem of contemporary ecology. Lead is a
potential toxicant which has a toxic effect upon all
organs and systems of a living organism . Modern
pharmacological remedies, intended for treatment of
acute and chronic intoxications with heavy metal salts,
produce a series of undesirable effects that limit their
application considerably . In recent years, new data
have appeared indicating the possibility of using alter-
native preparations of plant origin belonging to the
group of non-starch polysaccharides that possess a
metal-binding activity. This group of promising com-
pounds also includes pectin, obtained from the eelgrass
. Experiments in vitro have shown that
this pectin surpass many other sorbents in its metal-
binding ability and is very comparable with complex-
ing agents . As well, pectin promotes the excretion of
lead ions from animals .
This work is aimed at evaluation of the antitoxic
effect of pectin extracted from the eelgrass
on the liver state of rats with experimental lead
MATERIALS AND METHODS
was collected in clean
areas of Peter the Great Bay of the Sea of Japan. Pectin
was extracted using the method described by Ovodova
et al. . The content of galacturonic acid in the pectin
was determined using the colorimetric hydroxydiphe-
nyl method . The degree of etheriﬁcation was mea-
sured using titrimetry . Molecular weight was calcu-
lated using parameters of characteristic viscosity .
Thirty mature, white, non-strain male rats with body
weight 150–195 g were divided into three groups.
The animals of the “control” group were given the stan-
dard diet. Animals in the “lead” and “lead+pectin”
groups were administered 1 ml of lead acetate solution
containing 100 mg lead per 1 kg body weight intragas-
trically through a gavage daily, 2 hours after feeding,
for 14 days in addition to their standard diet. In two
weeks, the administration of lead was stopped, and
arterial blood was sampled in half of the lightly ether-
izated rats from the control and lead groups, then the
animals were decapitated. The liver was removed,
washed and weighed and concentrations of total choles-
terol and triglycerides were measured in the blood.
In the liver, we assayed the contents of malonic dialde-
hyde (MDA), reduced glutathione, SH-groups, total
cholesterol, triglycerides, and lead. As well, the
remaining animals of the control and lead groups were
fed only the standard diet, while animals from the
lead+pectin group were administered a 1% water solu-
tion of pectin at a dose of 50 mg/kg body weight intra-
gastrically through a gavage one hour before feeding.
At the end of the experiment, blood samples were taken
in lightly etherized rats, and the animals were decapi-
tated, following which their livers were removed and
weighed. Blood and liver were examined for their con-
tents as described above. The lead content in liver tissue
was determined by the atomic-absorption method.
The MDA concentration was determined using the
method described earlier by Yagy . The amount of
reduced glutathione and SH-groups were assessed with
the use of the standard method of Anderson . Total
cholesterol and triglycerides were determined spectro-
Effectiveness of Pectin Extracted from the Eelgrass Zostera
marina for Alleviating Lead-Induced Liver Injury
L. N. Sonina
and M. Yu. Khotimchenko
Vladivostok State Medical University, Vladivostok, 690002 Russia
Institute of Marine Biology, Far East Division, Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladivostok, 690041 Russia
Received February 1, 2007.
—The effects of pectin from the eelgrass
on toxic liver injury induced by enteral
administration of lead acetate are examined in experiments on rats. The results show that pectin helps to rapidly
reduce lead concentration in liver, to decrease lipid peroxidation, and to normalize the levels of total cholesterol
and triglycerides in blood serum and liver.
: polysaccharides, pectin,
, lead, liver.