Propolis is a resinous beehive product that has been used worldwide in traditional medicine to prevent and treat colds, wounds, rheumatism, heart disease and diabetes. Diabetic nephropathy is the final stage of renal complications caused by diabetes and for its treatment there are few alternatives. The present study aimed to determine the chemical composition of three propolis samples collected in Chihuahua, Durango and Zacatecas and to evaluate the effect of pinocembrin in a model of diabetic nephropathy in vivo. Previous research demonstrated that propolis of Chihuahua possesses hypoglycemic and antioxidant activities. Two different schemes were assessed, preventive (before renal damage) and corrective (once renal damage is established). In the preventive scheme, pinocembrin treatment avoids death of the rats, improves lipid profile, glomerular filtration rate, urinary protein, avoid increases in urinary biomarkers, oxidative stress and glomerular basement membrane thickness. Whereas, in the corrective scheme, pinocembrin only improves lipid profile without showing improvement in any other parameters, even pinocembrin exacerbated the damage. In conclusion, pinocembrin ameliorates diabetic nephropathy when there is no kidney damage but when it is already present, pinocembrin accelerates kidney damage.