Melamine (MA) is considered as a natural nitrogen heterocyclic substance that is added to soil to improve the soil fertility and used to manufacture plastics, dyes and cloths. In recent years many milk processing companies have started adding melamine (MA) to milk to increase its protein content and this led to toxic effects to many organs such as liver, brain, kidney etc. and caused bladder cancer in experimental animals. Recent studies have proved that green tea extract (GTE) has a hepatoprotective role and has health benefits against a variety of toxins associated with oxidative stress. The aim of the present study is to evaluate the protective effect of green tea against the hematological, biochemical, histopathological and ultrastructural changes in rat liver induced by subchronic exposure to melamine. Eighty adult albino rats (200-250 gm) were equally divided into four groups; group I received normal distilled water orally, group II received 1.5% w/v GTE, group III received MA (50 mg/kg b.wt/day), and group IV received MA (50 mg/kg b.wt/day) plus 1.5% w/v GTE. All rats were given GTE by gastric gavage for 2 months. The animals were sacrificed under general anesthesia, and the blood and liver were sampled and prepared for haematological, biochemical, histopathological and ultrastructural examinations. The results revealed that MA treatment (group III) caused significant alterations in haematological and biochemical parameters in comparison with groups I and II. Also, histopathological and ultrastructural examination of the liver revealed severe degenerative changes. Co-administration of GTE with MA ameliorated most of the toxic effects of melamine (group IV). Our results demonstrated that GTE exerts protective effect by alleviating the toxic pathological changes caused by MA in the liver of albino rats.
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