Effects of Gadolinium-Based Contrast Agents on the Kidney, Liver, and Heart of Wistar Rats

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJAR.2014.09.04.Art002

Authors : Oluwafemi Olumide Egbeyemi, Anthony Chukwuka Ugwu


The harmless potential of gadolinium-based contrast agent (GBCA) used in MRI studies was remarkable until when gadolinium was detected in the brain, bones, and skin. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of four GBCAs on the liver, heart, and kidney of Wistar rats. Twenty-five (25) male Wistar rats weighing 165-239 g were divided into 4 experimental and control groups after obtaining ethical approval from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR). Specimens in the experimental groups received 2.5 mls / day of one GBCA and the control same normal saline through the lateral tail for 5 days consecutively / week. The Livers, Hearts and Kidneys were harvested 4 weeks following last injection. Pathohistology showed all kidney tissues exposed to Gadopentetate, 80 % to Gadodiamide, and 40 % to Dotarem and Cyclolux were inflamed. Sixty percent Gadodiamide and Doterem to the liver tissue, 50 % and 20 % to Gadopentetate and Cyclolux also inflamed. Samples exposed to Gadopentetate and Dotarem had 50 and 40 % of their heart tissue inflamed. Only those to Gadodiamide and Cyclolux were not affected. Injuries like necrosis, degeneration, and hypertrophy were also noted in all the tissues. All GBCAs were statistically significant in all tissue studied. Gadolinium-based contrast agents had a weak negative correlation with inflamed and degenerated tissues, also a weak positive correlation with hypertrophied tissue, but a moderate positive correlation with necrosis tissues of the kidney, liver, and heart.

Keywords: Contrast agents, Heart, Histopathology, Kidney, Liver, Magnetic resonance imaging.


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