Quercetin attenuates zymosan-induced arthritis in mice

Carla F.S. Guazelli, Larissa Staurengo-Ferrari, Ana C. Zarpelon, Felipe A. Pinho-Ribeiro, Kenji W. Ruiz-Miyazawa, Fabiana T.M.C. Vicentini, Josiane A. Vignoli, Doumit Camilios-Neto, Sandra R. Georgetti, Marcela M. Baracat, Rubia Casagrande, Waldiceu A. Verri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by articular lesions, recruitment of inflammatory cells and increased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokine. The intra-articular administration of zymosan is an experimental model that promotes inflammatory parameters resembling RA. Therefore, this model was used to investigate the efficacy of quercetin as a treatment of articular inflammation. Treatment with quercetin dose-dependently reduced zymosan-induced hyperalgesia, articular edema and the recruitment of neutrophils to the knee joint cavity. Histological analysis confirmed that quercetin inhibited zymosan-induced arthritis. The treatment with quercetin also inhibited zymosan-induced depletion of reduced glutathione (GSH) levels, TNFα and IL-1β production, and gp91phox, prepro-endothelin-1 (preproET-1), and cyclooxygenase-2 mRNA expression. These molecular effects of quercetin were related to the inhibition of the nuclear factor kappa-B and induction of Nuclear factor erythroid 2- related factor (Nrf2)/home oxygenase (HO-1) pathway. Thus, quercetin exerted anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antioxidant effects in experimental arthritis, suggesting quercetin is a possible candidate for arthritis treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-184
Number of pages10
JournalBiomedicine and Pharmacotherapy
StatePublished - Jun 2018


  • Inflammation
  • NF-κB
  • Nrf2/heme Oxygenase (HO-1) pathway
  • Oxidative stress
  • Quercetin
  • Rheumatoid arthritis


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