Vol 25, No 1 (2022)
Research paper
Published online: 2022-01-27

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The efficacy of melatonin against radiotoxicity of iodine-131 and its response to treatment in hyperthyroid patients: a randomized controlled trial

Soudabe Alidadi12, Ali Shabestani Monfared3, Mehrangiz Amiri4, Ebrahim Zabihi2, Ehsan Assadollahi2, Amir Gholami4, Zoleika Moazezi5, Zeinab Abedian2
Pubmed: 35137935
Nucl. Med. Rev 2022;25(1):31-36.


Background: Since melatonin is a non-toxic compound with proven radioprotective effects, we aimed to investigate its efficacy in an in-vivo setting in hyperthyroid patients who are treated with iodine-131. This double-blind placebo-controlled study was conducted on hyperthyroid patients referred to nuclear medicine centers in Babol, Iran. We excluded patients suffering from hypertension treated with warfarin, autoimmune diseases, genetic diseases, cancers, smokers, chemical wounded, radiology and radiotherapy workers, and those who were treated with chemotherapy agents. Patients were randomly assigned to receive a capsule containing 300 mg of melatonin powder or a placebo. Just before receiving iodine-131, blood samples were taken from individuals. All 52 female patients received 10 to 20 mCi iodine-131 for treating hyperthyroidism. A second blood sample was taken one hour after the administration of iodine-131. Material and methods: To determine the chromosomal damages before and after receiving radioiodine, we performed the cytokinesis- block micronucleus assay. Also, at phase 2, 6 months follow-up was performed, in which patients’ positive responses to treatment were compared. Results: The findings of this study indicate that the difference in micronucleus formation between the placebo and melatonin groups is not significant. However, a significant difference in the 6 months follow-up revealed that 61.5% and 85.7% of patients had a positive response to treatment in the placebo and melatonin groups, respectively. Conclusions: As one of the first studies dealing with the human in-vivo assessment on the radioprotective effects of melatonin, it was concluded that melatonin has a non-significant positive impact on reducing the rate of chromosomal damages in hyperthyroid patients treated with iodine-131. Nevertheless, the outcome of treatment was significantly higher by melatonin compared to the placebo group.

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