The aim of this experimental study was to investigate the possible role of nitric oxide (NO) and the activities of adenosine deaminase (ADA) and xanthine oxidase (XO) in the pathogenesis of isoniazid (INH)-induced oxidative damage in red blood cells (RBCs), and also to show the effect of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) and erdosteine, antioxidants, in decreasing this toxicity. A total of 25 adult male rats were divided into four experimental groups as follows: control group (n = 7), INH-treated group (n = 6), INH + CAPE-treated group (n = 6), and IN H + erdosteine-treated group (n = 6). INH, INH-CAPE, and INH-erdosteine-treated groups were treated orally with INH 50 mg/kg daily and with the tap water for 15 days. Control group was given only tap water. CAPE was intraperitoneally injected for 15 days at a dose of 10 mu mol/kg. Erdosteine was treated orally for 15 days at a dose of 10 mg/kg/day. The injection of IN H led to a significant increase in the activities of ADA, XO, and NO levels in RBCs of rats. Co-treatment with CAPE caused a significant decrease in the activities of ADA and XO and the levels of NO in RBCs. In addition, co-treatment with erdosteine caused a significant decrease in the activities of ADA and XO and the levels of NO in RBCs. The results of this study showed that ADA, XO, and NO may play all important role in the pathogenesis of INH-induced oxidative stress in RBCs. CAPE and erdosteine may have protective potential in this process and they may become a promising drug in the prevention of this undesired side effect of INK Toxicology and Industrial Health 2008; 24: 519-524.