To investigate the anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative and tissue protective effects, as well as the potential therapeutic role, of alpha-lipoic acid in experimentally induced acute otitis media.
Twenty-five guinea pigs were assigned to one of five groups: a control (non-otitis) group, and otitis-induced groups treated with saline, penicillin G, alpha-lipoic acid, or alpha-lipoic acid plus penicillin G. Tissue samples were histologically analysed, and oxidative parameters in tissue samples were measured and compared between groups.
The epithelial integrity was better preserved, and histological signs of inflammation and secretory metaplasia were decreased, in all groups compared to the saline treated otitis group. In the alpha-lipoic acid plus penicillin G treated otitis group, epithelial integrity was well preserved and histological findings of inflammation were significantly decreased compared to the saline, penicillin G and alpha-lipoic acid treated otitis groups. The most favourable oxidative parameters were observed in the control group, followed by the alpha-lipoic acid plus penicillin G treated otitis group.
Alpha-lipoic acid, with its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and tissue protective properties, may decrease the clinical sequelae and morbidity associated with acute otitis media.