Ketotifen and nitroxides decrease capsaicin-augmented ethanol-induced gastric damage in rats

F. Karmeli, R. Eliakim, E. Okon, D. Rachmilewitz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Systemic administration of capsaicin aggravates ethanol-induced injury of rat gastric mucosa. We evaluated the effect of subcutaneous administration of capsaicin on the gastric mucosa and on inflammatory mediators in saline- and ethanol-treated rats. Functional ablation of primary afferent C-fibers by capsaicin (total 100 mg/kg subcutaneous) tripled ethanol-induced damage. Pretreatment with ketotifen, a mast cell stabilizer (1 mg/kg) protected rat gastric mucosa from the amplified injury induced by capsaicin and ethanol. Tempol, a selective nontoxic cell-permeable nitroxide, completely prevented the amplified gastric ulceration induced by capsaicin and ethanol. This was accompanied by a significant decrease in leukotriene B4 and C4 generation. It is therefore suggested that mast cells and free radicals contribute to the amplified injury observed in rats pretreated with capsaicin and ethanol and that the pharmacological modulation of mast cell release and scavenging of free radicals may be of therapeutic efficacy in the prevention of gastric injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1140-1146
Number of pages7
JournalDigestive Diseases and Sciences
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • capsaicin
  • gastric injury
  • ketotifen
  • nitroxides


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