Diosmin (DM) is a naturally occurring flavone and has been found to possess numerous therapeutic properties. In this study, we used DM as a protective agent against the nephrotoxic effects of the environmental toxicant trichloroethylene (TCE). Male Wistar rats were divided into five groups (I–V, n 6). Groups II, III and IV received an oral administration of TCE at a dose of 1000 mg/kg body weight for twenty consecutive days. The animals in groups II and III received an oral treatment of DM at doses of 20 and 40 mg/kg body weight, respectively, for twenty consecutive days, while groups I and V were given maize oil (5 ml/kg body weight and DM 40 mg/kg body weight, respectively) for 20 d. The protective effects of DM on TCE-induced oxidative stress and caspase-dependent apoptosis were investigated by assaying oxidative stress biomarkers, lipid peroxidation (LPO), serum toxicity markers, alkaline unwinding assay, caspase-3, -7 and -9, Bax and p53 expression. Oral administration of TCE in rats enhanced renal LPO, depleted glutathione content and antioxidant enzymes, induced DNA strand breaks (P< 0·001), modulated the expression of Bax and p53 protein and induced the expression of caspase-3, -7 and -9. Co-treatment with DM prevented oxidative stress by restoring the levels of antioxidant enzymes; furthermore, a significant dose-dependent decrease in DNA disintegration and kidney toxicity markers such as blood urea N, creatinine, lactate dehydrogenase and kidney injury molecule-1 was observed. DM also effectively decreased the TCE-induced up-regulation of Bax and p53. Data from the present study establish the protective role of DM against TCE-induced renal damage.