Background/aims. This experimental study was designed to evaluate histological changes of the kidney and renal tissue levels of malondialdehyde (MDA), reduced glutathione (GSH), and nitric oxide (NO) and the effect of resveratrol on these metabolites after bile duct ligation in rats. Methods. Secondary biliary cirrhosis was induced by bile duct ligation for 28 days. Swiss albino rats were divided into three groups. Group 1: Sham (n=7), Group 2: Bile duct ligation (n=7), Group 3: Bile duct ligation plus resveratrol (n=7). Bile duct ligation (BDL) plus resveratrol group received 10 mgr/kg dose of resveratrol intraperitoneally daily throughout 28 days. Kidney tissues were harvested to determine the tissue levels of MDA, GSH, and NO activity. Liver and kidney tissues were removed for light microscopic evaluation. Results. Cholestasis was determined by biochemical and pathologic examination. In the resveratrol-treated rats, levels of MDA were significantly lower than those of the BDL group (p<0.04). The levels of GSH in the resveratrol-treated rats were significantly higher than those in the BDL group (p<0.01). The levels of NO in the resveratrol group were significantly lower than those in the BDL group (p<0.01). Conclusion. The present study demonstrates that intraperitoneal administration of resveratrol in bile duct ligated rats maintains antioxidant defenses and reduces kidney oxidative damage. This effect of resveratrol may be useful in the preservation of renal oxidative stress in cholestasis.