Lithium-Induced Hypothyroidism: Oxidative Stress and Osmotic Fragility Status in Rats

Toplan S., Dariyerli N., Ozdemir S., Ozcelik D., Zengin E. U., Akyolcu M. C.

BIOLOGICAL TRACE ELEMENT RESEARCH, vol.152, no.3, pp.373-378, 2013 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 152 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12011-013-9629-4
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.373-378
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


The present study was conducted to explore the possible effects of different doses of lithium carbonate on thyroid functions, erythrocyte oxidant-antioxidant status, and osmotic fragility. Twenty-four Wistar-type male rats were equally divided into three groups: groups I and II received 0.1 and0.2 % lithium carbonate in their drinking water, respectively, for 30 days. The rats in group III served as controls, drinking tap water without added lithium. At the end of the experimental period, the erythrocyte osmotic fragility and the levels of triiodothyronine (T-3), thyroxine (T-4), thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), malondialdehyde (MDA), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and glutathione (GSH) were measured in blood samples. Compared to controls, there was a statistically significant increase of TSH but decreases of the T-3 and T-4 levels in group II. Both experimental groups showed a statistically significant increase of the maximum osmotic fragility limit. The minimum osmotic fragility values of the animals in group II were statistically higher than those of controls. The standard hemolytic increment curve of both experimental groups was shifted to the right when compared to the curve obtained from the controls. Also, relative to controls, the activities of MDA and SOD were significantly higher and the GSH level lower in group II, but not so in group I. The results of the present study show that treatment with lithium carbonate may result in thyroid function abnormalities, increased oxidative damage, and possible compromise of the erythrocyte membrane integrity resulting from increased osmotic fragility.