Background: Recent retrospective observational studies suggest that high-potency statin therapy might increase the risk of acute kidney injury, however data on this subject is scares.
Objectives: This study, was designed to investigate the renal tubular cell effect of different doses of atorvastatin to detect the possible aggravation of renal function or morphology of the kidney.
Materials and Methods: In this experimental study 24 male Wistar rats were designated into 4 equal groups and treated as follows. Control group received phosphate buffer as the vehicle of atorvastatin for 7 days. Groups 1, II and III received atorvastatin at doses of 10, 50 and 150 mg/kg daily for 7 days, then on the day 8, all rats were anesthetized using ketamine and the blood samples were collected for evaluation of creatinine (Cr) and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) levels and then all rats were sacrificed, then the animals’ kidneys were dissected out and histopathological studies were performed Results: Mean (±SD) of scores of injury to renal tubular cells in control group was 4.2 ± 2.2 and in groups I, II and III were 6.44 ± 4.9, 15.4 ± 8.5 and 25.8 ± 12.7 respectively. Group III which received 150 mg/kg/day of atorvastatin had significant renal damage in comparison to control group (P < 0.001). There was no significant difference of renal injury score between control group with groups of I and II.
Conclusions: In the present study we found, atorvastatin with a dose of 150 mg/kg/day for 7 days was nephrotoxic for rats, while lower doses at 10 mg/kg/day or 50 mg/kg/day for 7 days were not accompanied by renal injury. These findings imply further attention to the administration of higher doses of atorvastatin in clinical conditions.