This study was performed to evaluate the effect of melatonin on methanol-induced liver injury. We evaluated the levels of malondialdehyde (MDA), protein carbonylation (PC), myeloperoxidase (MPO) activities and to assess lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, neutrophil accumulation and nitrite which is a stable end product of nitric oxide respectively. We also studied superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase activities of liver tissue to evaluate the changes in the antioxidant status. Histopathological alterations were also determined. The experiment was performed on Wistar rats, which received intragastric 3 g/kg methanol as a 50% solution in isotonic saline once. After 6 and 24 hr all the drug received and intoxicated rats were killed under anesthesia. Pretreatment with melatonin (10 mg/kg) decreased the MDA levels significantly, restored the PC levels to the control, prevented the increase of nitrite level and MPO activity significantly and reversed to the control levels, prevented the reduction in all of the antioxidant enzyme activities. Additionally in melatonin treated group piecemeal necrosis, lobular lytic necrosis, and portal inflammation returned to normal histologic appearances when compared with methanol administration. In conclusion, melatonin has protective effects against methanol-induced hepatic injury. © 2007 The Authors.