Parkinson’s disease (PD), a neurodegenerative movement disorder of the central nervous system (CNS) is characterized by a progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta region of the midbrain. Although the etiology of PD is not completely understood and is believed to be multifactorial, oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction are widely considered major consequences, which provide important clues to the disease mechanisms. Studies have explored the role of free radicals and oxidative stress that contributes to the cascade of events leading to dopamine cell degeneration in PD. In general, in-built protective mechanisms consisting of enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants in the CNS play decisive roles in preventing neuronal cell loss due to free radicals. But the ability to produce these antioxidants decreases with aging. Therefore, antioxidant therapy alone or in combination with current treatment methods may represent an attractive strategy for treating or preventing the neurodegeneration seen in PD. Here we summarize the recent discoveries of potential antioxidant compounds for modulating free radical mediated oxidative stress leading to neurotoxicity in PD.
Parkinson’s disease; oxidative stress; free radicals; antioxidants; neuroprotection
Besides fluorine, oxygen is the most electronegative element with the
highest reduction potential in biological systems. Metabolic pathways in
mammalian cells utilize oxygen as the ultimate oxidizing agent to harvest free
energy. They are very efficient, but not without risk of generating various oxygen
radicals. These cells have good antioxidative defense mechanisms to neutralize
these radicals and prevent oxidative stress. However, increased oxidative stress
results in oxidative modifications in lipid, protein, and nucleic acids, leading to
mitochondrial dysfunction and cell death. Oxidative stress and mitochondrial
dysfunction have been implicated in many neurodegenerative disorders including
Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and stroke-related brain damage.
Research has indicated mitochondria play a central role in cell suicide. An
increase in oxidative stress causes mitochondrial dysfunction, leading to more
production of reactive oxygen species and eventually mitochondrial membrane
permeabilization. Once the mitochondria are destabilized, cells are destined to
commit suicide. Therefore, antioxidative agents alone are not sufficient to protect
neuronal loss in many neurodegenerative diseases. Combinatorial treatment with
antioxidative agents could stabilize mitochondria and may be the most suitable
strategy to prevent neuronal loss. This review discusses recent work related to
oxidative toxicity in the central nervous system and strategies to treat
Debilitating neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD), can be attributed to neuronal cell damage in specific brain regions. An important hallmark of these diseases is increased oxidative and nitrosative stress that occurs via overproduction of highly reactive free radicals known as reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS). These molecules are normally removed by cellular antioxidant systems. Under physiological conditions, ROS/RNS are present at low levels, mediating several neurotrophic and neuroprotective signaling pathways. In contrast, under pathological conditions, there is a pronounced increase in ROS/RNS generation, impairing normal neurological function. Nitric oxide (NO) is one such molecule that functions as a signaling agent under physiological conditions but causes nitrosative stress under pathological conditions due to its enhanced production. As first reported by our group and colleagues, the toxic effects of NO can be in part attributed to thiol S-nitrosylation, a posttranslational modification of cysteine residues on specific proteins. Here, we review several reports appearing over the past decade showing that S-nitrosylation of an increasing number of proteins compromises important cellular functions, including mitochondrial dynamics, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) protein folding, and signal transduction, thereby promoting synaptic damage, cell death, and neurodegeneration.
Parkinson’s disease is a high incidence neurodegenerative disease in elderly people, and oxidative stress plays an important role in the pathogenesis. Oxygen metabolism in the brain is high, which lacks an antioxidative protection mechanism. Recently, it has been found that polyphenols play an important role in antioxidation. (−)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) is an important component of tea polyphenols and its biological effects, such as strong antioxidation, scavenging of free radicals and anti-apoptosis, can pass through the blood brain barrier. The SIRT1/PGC-1α signaling pathway has not been reported in PC12 cells. Therefore, research of the protective mechanism of EGCG in PC12 cells damaged by -methyl-4-phenyl-pyridine (MMP+) may provide a new insight into protect against and treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
MPP+-treated highly differentiated PC12 cells were used as the in vitro cell model. An MTT assay was used to investigate cell viability after EGCG treatment, a dichlorofluorescin diacetate assay was used to measure reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, western blot analysis was used to observe PGC-1α and SIRT1 protein expression, and real-time PCR to observe PGC-1α, SOD1 and GPX1 mRNA expression.
PC12 cell viability was significantly reduced after MPP+ treatment by 11.46% compared with that of the control (P < 0.05). However, cell viability was unchanged by 10 μmol/L EGCG treatment. In co-treatments with EGCG and MPP+, cell viability was significantly increased by 12.92% (P < 0.05) and MPP+-induced ROS production was markedly decreased. PGC-1α mRNA expression was obviously upregulated by 21.51% (P < 0.05), and SOD1 and GPX1 mRNA expression was slightly increased by 12.94% and 15.63% (P > 0.05), respectively, by treatment with EGCG and then MPP+ for 12 h. The mRNA expression of PGC-1α, SOD1 and GPX1 was increased by 25.17%, 40% and 146% (all P < 0.05), respectively, by treatment with EGCG and then MPP+ for 24 h. Such effects were not observed with MPP+ treatment alone.
The SIRT1/PGC-1α pathway is one of the mechanisms of EGCG suppression of MPP+-induced injury of PC12 cells.
Parkinson’s disease; (−)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate; PC12 cells; PGC-1α; SIRT1
Biological tissues require oxygen to meet their energetic demands. However, the consumption of oxygen also results in the generation of free radicals that may have damaging effects on cells. The brain is particularly vulnerable to the effects of reactive oxygen species due to its high demand for oxygen, and its abundance of highly peroxidisable substrates. Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalance in the redox state of the cell, either by overproduction of reactive oxygen species, or by dysfunction of the antioxidant systems. Oxidative stress has been detected in a range of neurodegenerative disease, and emerging evidence from in vitro and in vivo disease models suggests that oxidative stress may play a role in disease pathogenesis. However, the promise of antioxidants as novel therapies for neurodegenerative diseases has not been borne out in clinical studies. In this review, we critically assess the hypothesis that oxidative stress is a crucial player in common neurodegenerative disease and discuss the source of free radicals in such diseases. Furthermore, we examine the issues surrounding the failure to translate this hypothesis into an effective clinical treatment.
Tea, the major source of dietary flavonoids, particularly the epicatechins, signifies the second most frequently consumed beverage worldwide, which varies its status from a simple ancient cultural drink to a nutrient component, endowed possible beneficial neuro-pharmacological actions. Accumulating evidence suggests that oxidative stress, resulting in reactive oxygen species generation, plays a pivotal role in neurodegenerative diseases, supporting the implementation of radical scavengers and metal chelating agents, such as natural tea polyphenols, for therapy. Vast epidemiology data indicate a correlation between occurrence of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, and green tea consumption. In particular, recent literature strengthens the perception that diverse molecular signaling pathways, participating in the neuroprotective activity of the major green tea polyphenol, (−)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), renders this natural compound as potential agent to reduce the risk of various neurodegenerative diseases. In the current review, we discuss the studies concerning the mechanisms of action implicated in EGCG-induced neuroprotection and discuss the vision to translate these findings into a lifestyle arena.
(−)-Epigallocatechin-3-gallate; Neurodegenerative diseases; Radical scavenging; Iron chelation; Neuroprotection
Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease (PD) and Alzheimer's disease(AD), are a group of pathologies characterized by a progressive and specific loss of certain brain cell populations. Oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, and apoptosis play interrelated roles in these disorders. It is well documented that free radical oxidative damage, particularly on neuronal lipids, proteins, DNA, and RNA, is extensive in PD and AD brains. Moreover, alterations of glutathione (GSH) metabolism in brain have been implicated in oxidative stress and neurodegenerative diseases. As a consequence, the reduced GSH levels observed in these pathologies have stimulated a number of researchers to find new potential approaches for maintaining or restoring GSH levels. Unfortunately, GSH delivery to the central nervous system (CNS) is limited due to a poor stability and low bioavailability. Medicinal-chemistry- and technology-based approaches are commonly used to improve physicochemical, biopharmaceutical, and drug delivery properties of therapeutic agents. This paper will focus primarily on these approaches used in order to replenish intracellular GSH levels, which are reduced in neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we discuss the beneficial properties of these approaches and their potential implications for the future treatment of patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases, and more specifically from PD and AD.
The interplay between free radicals, antioxidants, and co-factors is important in maintaining health, aging and age-related diseases. Free radicals induce oxidative stress, which is balanced by the body’s endogenous antioxidant systems with an input from co-factors, and by the ingestion of exogenous antioxidants. If the generation of free radicals exceeds the protective effects of antioxidants, and some co-factors, this can cause oxidative damage which accumulates during the life cycle, and has been implicated in aging, and age dependent diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, and other chronic conditions. The life expectancy of the world population is increasing, and it is estimated that by 2025, 29% of the world population will be aged ≥60 years, and this will lead to an increase in the number of older people acquiring age-related chronic diseases. This will place greater financial burden on health services and high social cost for individuals and society. In order to acheive healthy aging the older people should be encouraged to acquire healthy life styles which should include diets rich in antioxidants. The aim of this review is to highlight the main themes from studies on free radicals, antioxidants and co-factors, and to propose an evidence-based strategy for healthy aging.
free radicals; antioxidants; co-factors; age-related diseases; healthy aging
Oxidative stress, resulting from mitochondrial dysfunction, excitotoxicity, or neuroinflammation, is implicated in numerous neurodegenerative conditions. Damage due to superoxide, hydroxyl radical, and peroxynitrite has been observed in diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, as well as in acute conditions that lead to neuronal death, such as stroke and epilepsy. Antioxidant therapies to remove these toxic compounds have been of great interest in treating these disorders. Catalytic antioxidants mimic the activities of superoxide dismutase or catalase or both, detoxifying superoxide and hydrogen peroxide, and in some cases, peroxynitrite and other toxic species as well. Several compounds have demonstrated efficacy in in vitro and in animal models of neurodegeneration, leading to optimism that catalytic antioxidants may prove to be useful therapies in human disease. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 11, 555–569.
Oxidative stress is a key pathologic factor in neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. The failure of free-radical-scavenging antioxidants in clinical trials pinpoints an urgent need to identify and to block major sources of oxidative stress in neurodegenerative diseases. As a major superoxide-producing enzyme complex in activated phagocytes, phagocytic NADPH oxidase (PHOX) is essential for host defense. However, recent preclinical evidence has underscored a pivotal role of over-activated PHOX in chronic neuroinflammation and progressive neurodegeneration. Deficiency in PHOX subunits mitigates neuronal damage induced by diverse insults/stresses relevant to neurodegenerative diseases. More importantly, the suppression of PHOX activity correlates with less neuronal impairment in models of neurodegenerative diseases. The discovery of PHOX and non-phagocytic NADPH oxidases in astroglia and neurons further reinforces the critical role of NADPH oxidases in oxidative stress-mediated chronic neurodegeneration. Thus, proper modulation of NADPH oxidase activity might hold therapeutic potential for currently incurable neurodegenerative diseases.
The balance of redox is pivotal for normal function and integrity of tissues. Ischemic insults occur as results of a variety of conditions, leading to an accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and an imbalanced redox status in the tissues. The oxidant stress may activate signaling mechanisms provoking more toxic events, and eventually cause tissue damage. Therefore, treatments with antioxidants, free radical scavengers and their mimetics, as well as gene transfer approaches to overexpress antioxidant genes represent potential therapeutic options to correct the redox imbalance. Among them, antioxidant gene transfer may enhance the production of antioxidant scavengers, and has been employed to experimentally prevent or treat ischemic injury in cardiovascular, pulmonary, hepatic, intestinal, central nervous or other systems in animal models. With improvements in vector systems and delivery approaches, innovative antioxidant gene therapy has conferred better outcomes for myocardial infarction, reduced restenosis after coronary angioplasty, improved the quality and function of liver grafts, as well as outcome of intestinal and cerebral ischemic attacks. However, it is crucial to be mindful that like other therapeutic armentarium, the efficacy of antioxidant gene transfer requires extensive preclinical investigation before it can be used in patients, and that it may have unanticipated short- or long-term adverse effects. Thus, it is critical to balance between the therapeutic benefits and potential risks, to develop disease-specific antioxidant gene transfer strategies, to deliver the therapy with an optimal time window and in a safe manner. This review attempts to provide the rationale, the most effective approaches and the potential hurdles of available antioxidant gene transfer approaches for ischemic injury in various organs, as well as the possible directions of future preclinical and clinical investigations of this highly promising therapeutic modality.
ischemia/reperfusion; ischemic injury; oxidant stress; reactive oxygen species; antioxidant; gene transfer; gene therapy; liver; heart; lung; central nervous system; intestine; superoxide dismutase; catalase; glutathione peroxidase; heme oxygenase-1; xanthine oxidase; NADPH oxidase
Antioxidants from natural resources possess multifaceted and importance of the activities provides substantial scope in neurodegenerative diseases. The aim of this study was to assess and compare the free radical scavenging activities of Cnidium officinale and Ligusticum chuanxiong, which are closely related species.
Materials and Methods:
The scavenging activities of plant materials were evaluated using Trolox equivalent antioxidant capacity (TEAC), oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) and 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH), superoxide radical (O2·-), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), hydroxyl (OH·), nitric oxide radical (NO·) and metal chelation. In addition, the cell viability and nitric oxide release were assayed using Neuro-2a (N2a) cells.
The methanolic extracts of C. officinale and L. chuanxiong showed scavenging activities of free radicals with an additional antioxidant capacity. Moreover, the efficacy on the cell viability and nitric oxide release in cell culture model has been established.
Results of the present study suggests that the extracts of C. officinale and L. chuanxiong have comparatively similar free radical scavenging activities in vitro and may have important health effects.
Antioxidant; Cnidium officinale; free radical scavenging; Ligusticum chuanxiong; Umbelliferae
Mitochondrial dysfunction is considered one of the major causative factors in the aging process, ischemia/reperfusion (I/R), septic shock, and neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinson's disease (PD), Alzheimer's disease (AD), and Huntington's disease (HD). Increased free radical generation, enhanced mitochondrial inducible nitric oxide (NO) synthase activity, enhanced NO production, decreased respiratory complex activity, impaired electron transport system, and opening of mitochondrial permeability transition pore all have been suggested as factors responsible for impaired mitochondrial function. Melatonin, the major hormone of the pineal gland, also acts as an antioxidant and as a regulator of mitochondrial bioenergetic function. Both in vitro and in vivo, melatonin was effective for preventing oxidative stress/nitrosative stress-induced mitochondrial dysfunction seen in experimental models of PD, AD, and HD. In addition, melatonin is known to retard aging and to inhibit the lethal effects of septic shock or I/R lesions by maintaining respiratory complex activities, electron transport chain, and ATP production in mitochondria. Melatonin is selectively taken up by mitochondrial membranes, a function not shared by other antioxidants. Melatonin has thus emerged as a major potential therapeutic tool for treating neurodegenerative disorders such as PD or AD, and for preventing the lethal effects of septic shock or I/R.
Oxidative damage is strongly implicated in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and stroke (brain ischemia/reperfusion injury). The availability of transgenic and toxin-inducible models of these conditions has facilitated the preclinical evaluation of putative antioxidant agents ranging from prototypic natural antioxidants such as vitamin E (α-tocopherol) to sophisticated synthetic free radical traps and catalytic oxidants. Literature review shows that antioxidant therapies have enjoyed general success in preclinical studies across disparate animal models, but little benefit in human intervention studies or clinical trials. Recent high-profile failures of vitamin E trials in Parkinson’s disease, and nitrone therapies in stroke, have diminished enthusiasm to pursue antioxidant neuroprotectants in the clinic. The translational disappointment of antioxidants likely arises from a combination of factors including failure to understand the drug candidate’s mechanism of action in relationship to human disease, and failure to conduct preclinical studies using concentration and time parameters relevant to the clinical setting. This review discusses the rationale for using antioxidants in the prophylaxis or mitigation of human neurodiseases, with a critical discussion regarding ways in which future preclinical studies may be adjusted to offer more predictive value in selecting agents for translation into human trials.
Alzheimer’s disease; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; antioxidants; Huntington’s disease; neurodegeneration; neuroinflammation; Parkinson’s disease; tocopherols
Free radicals and oxidants play a dual role as both toxic and beneficial compounds, since they can be either harmful or helpful to the body. They are produced either from normal cell metabolisms in situ or from external sources (pollution, cigarette smoke, radiation, medication). When an overload of free radicals cannot gradually be destroyed, their accumulation in the body generates a phenomenon called oxidative stress. This process plays a major part in the development of chronic and degenerative illness such as cancer, autoimmune disorders, aging, cataract, rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases. The human body has several mechanisms to counteract oxidative stress by producing antioxidants, which are either naturally produced in situ, or externally supplied through foods and/or supplements. This mini-review deals with the taxonomy, the mechanisms of formation and catabolism of the free radicals, it examines their beneficial and deleterious effects on cellular activities, it highlights the potential role of the antioxidants in preventing and repairing damages caused by oxidative stress, and it discusses the antioxidant supplementation in health maintenance.
free radicals; antioxidants; beneficial effects; deleterious effects; oxidative stress; diseases; health
The vulnerability of the nervous system to advancing age is all too often manifest in neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. In this review article we describe evidence suggesting that two dietary interventions, caloric restriction (CR) and intermittent fasting (IF), can prolong the health-span of the nervous system by impinging upon fundamental metabolic and cellular signaling pathways that regulate life-span. CR and IF affect energy and oxygen radical metabolism, and cellular stress response systems, in ways that protect neurons against genetic and environmental factors to which they would otherwise succumb during aging. There are multiple interactive pathways and molecular mechanisms by which CR and IF benefit neurons including those involving insulin-like signaling, FoxO transcription factors, sirtuins and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors. These pathways stimulate the production of protein chaperones, neurotrophic factors and antioxidant enzymes, all of which help cells cope with stress and resist disease. A better understanding of the impact of CR and IF on the aging nervous system will likely lead to novel approaches for preventing and treating neurodegenerative disorders.
Caloric restriction; Intermittent fasting; Aging
Increased oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction have been identified as common pathophysiological phenomena associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD) and Huntington's disease (HD). As the age-related decline in the production of melatonin may contribute to increased levels of oxidative stress in the elderly, the role of this neuroprotective agent is attracting increasing attention. Melatonin has multiple actions as a regulator of antioxidant and prooxidant enzymes, radical scavenger and antagonist of mitochondrial radical formation. The ability of melatonin and its kynuramine metabolites to interact directly with the electron transport chain by increasing the electron flow and reducing electron leakage are unique features by which melatonin is able to increase the survival of neurons under enhanced oxidative stress. Moreover, antifibrillogenic actions have been demonstrated in vitro, also in the presence of profibrillogenic apoE4 or apoE3, and in vivo, in a transgenic mouse model. Amyloid-β toxicity is antagonized by melatonin and one of its kynuramine metabolites. Cytoskeletal disorganization and protein hyperphosphorylation, as induced in several cell-line models, have been attenuated by melatonin, effects comprising stress kinase downregulation and extending to neurotrophin expression. Various experimental models of AD, PD and HD indicate the usefulness of melatonin in antagonizing disease progression and/or mitigating some of the symptoms. Melatonin secretion has been found to be altered in AD and PD. Attempts to compensate for age- and disease-dependent melatonin deficiency have shown that administration of this compound can improve sleep efficiency in AD and PD and, to some extent, cognitive function in AD patients. Exogenous melatonin has also been reported to alleviate behavioral symptoms such as sundowning. Taken together, these findings suggest that melatonin, its analogues and kynuric metabolites may have potential value in prevention and treatment of AD and other neurodegenerative disorders.
Alzheimer disease (AD) is an age-related progressive neurodegenerative disorder. This devastating disease is characterized by the presence of senile plaques (SP), neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs), and loss of synapses. Amyloid beta-peptide 1–42 (Aβ(1–42)) is the main component of SP and is pivotal to AD pathogenesis. Brain of subjects with AD and arguably its earliest manifestation, mild cognitive impairment (MCI), demonstrate increased levels of oxidative stress markers. Our laboratory combined these two aspects of AD and MCI and proposed the Aβ(1–42)-associated free radical oxidative stress hypothesis to explain oxidative stress under which the MCI and AD brain exist and the loss of synapses in both disorders. A large number of in vitro and in vivo studies showed that Aβ causes protein oxidation, lipid peroxidation, reactive oxygen species formation, and cell death in neuronal and synaptosomal systems. Methionine located at residue 35 of Aβ(1–42) is an important contributor to the oxidative stress associated with this neurotoxic peptide. In this paper, we summarize studies involving Met-35 of Aβ(1–42). Understanding the role of the single methionine residue of Aβ(1–42) may help in understanding underlying disease mechanisms in AD and MCI.
It has been demonstrated that oxidative stress has a ubiquitous role in neurodegenerative diseases. Major source of oxidative stress due to reactive oxygen species (ROS) is related to mitochondria as an endogenous source. Although there is ample evidence from tissues of patients with neurodegenerative disorders of morphological, biochemical, and molecular abnormalities in mitochondria, it is still not very clear whether the oxidative stress itself contributes to the onset of neurodegeneration or it is part of the neurodegenerative process as secondary manifestation. This paper begins with an overview of how oxidative stress occurs, discussing various oxidants and antioxidants, and role of oxidative stress in diseases in general. It highlights the role of oxidative stress in neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's diseases and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. The last part of the paper describes the role of oxidative stress causing deregulation of cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) hyperactivity associated with neurodegeneration.
Axonal degeneration is a main contributor to disability in progressive neurodegenerative diseases in which oxidative stress is often identified as a pathogenic factor. We aim to demonstrate that antioxidants are able to improve axonal degeneration and locomotor deficits in a mouse model of X-adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD).
X-ALD is a lethal disease caused by loss of function of the ABCD1 peroxisomal transporter of very long chain fatty acids (VLCFA). The mouse model for X-ALD exhibits a late onset neurological phenotype with locomotor disability and axonal degeneration in spinal cord resembling the most common phenotype of the disease, adrenomyeloneuropathy (X-AMN). Recently, we identified oxidative damage as an early event in life, and the excess of VLCFA as a generator of radical oxygen species (ROS) and oxidative damage to proteins in X-ALD.
Here, we prove the capability of the antioxidants N-acetyl-cysteine, α-lipoic acid, and α-tocopherol to scavenge VLCFA-dependent ROS generation in vitro. Furthermore, in a preclinical setting, the cocktail of the 3 compounds reversed: (1) oxidative stress and lesions to proteins, (2) immunohistological signs of axonal degeneration, and (3) locomotor impairment in bar cross and treadmill tests.
We have established a direct link between oxidative stress and axonal damage in a mouse model of neurodegenerative disease. This conceptual proof of oxidative stress as a major disease-driving factor in X-AMN warrants translation into clinical trials for X-AMN, and invites assessment of antioxidant strategies in axonopathies in which oxidative damage might be a contributing factor. Ann Neurol 2011;
A central issue in developing therapies for neurodegenerative diseases involves understanding why adaptive responses to stress or injury fail to prevent synaptic dysfunction and neuronal cell death. Macroautophagy is a major, evolutionarily conserved response to nutrient and bioenergetic stresses, which has the capacity to remove aggregated proteins and damaged organelles such as mitochondria. This has prompted intense interest in autophagy-related therapies for Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, stroke and other neurological diseases. However, excessive or imbalanced induction of autophagic recycling can actively contribute to neuronal atrophy, neurite degeneration and cell death. Oxidative-, aging- and disease-related increase in demand for autophagy, coupled with declining axonal trafficking, lysosomal degradation or biosynthetic efficiencies promote increased susceptibility to a harmful state of autophagic stress. A more complete understanding of dysfunction along the entire spectrum of autophagic recycling, from autophagosome formation through clearance and regeneration of new cellular components is necessary to restore balance to the system, promote neuronal health and maximize therapeutic potentials.
autophagy; protein aggregation; neurite degeneration; neuronal cell death; Parkinson’s disease; Alzheimer’s disease; Huntington’s disease; lysosomal storage disease; hypoxic-ischemic brain injury; aging
Diabetes is a common metabolic disorder that is usually accompanied by increased production of reactive oxygen species or by impaired antioxidant defenses. Importantly, oxidative stress is particularly relevant to the risk of cardiovascular disease. Alpha-lipoic acid (LA), a naturally occurring dithiol compound, has long been known as an essential cofactor for mitochondrial bioenergetic enzymes. LA is a very important micronutrient with diverse pharmacologic and antioxidant properties. Pharmacologically, LA improves glycemic control and polyneuropathies associated with diabetes mellitus; it also effectively mitigates toxicities associated with heavy metal poisoning. As an antioxidant, LA directly terminates free radicals, chelates transition metal ions, increases cytosolic glutathione and vitamin C levels, and prevents toxicities associated with their loss. These diverse actions suggest that LA acts by multiple mechanisms both physiologically and pharmacologically. Its biosynthesis decreases as people age and is reduced in people with compromised health, thus suggesting a possible therapeutic role for LA in such cases. Reviewed here is the known efficacy of LA with particular reference to types 1 and 2 diabetes. Particular attention is paid to the potential benefits of LA with respect to glycemic control, improved insulin sensitivity, oxidative stress, and neuropathy in diabetic patients. It appears that the major benefit of LA supplementation is in patients with diabetic neuropathy.
diabetes; diabetic neuropathy; dosage; lipoic acid; oxidative stress
Oxidative stress is an imbalance between the production of free radicals and antioxidant defense mechanisms, potentially leading to tissue damage. Oxidative stress has a key role in the development of cerebrovascular and/or neurodegenerative diseases. This phenomenon is mainly mediated by an enhanced superoxide production by the vascular endothelium with its consequent dysfunction. Thioctic, also known as alpha-lipoic acid (1,2-dithiolane-3-pentanoic acid), is a naturally occurring antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals in the fatty and watery regions of cells. Both the reduced and oxidized forms of the compound possess antioxidant ability. Thioctic acid has two optical isomers designated as (+)- and (−)-thioctic acid. Naturally occurring thioctic acid is the (+)-thioctic acid form, but the synthetic compound largely used in the market for stability reasons is a mixture of (+)- and (−)-thioctic acid. The present study was designed to compare the antioxidant activity of the two enantiomers versus the racemic form of thioctic acid on hydrogen peroxide-induced apoptosis in a rat pheochromocytoma PC12 cell line. Cell viability was evaluated by MTT (3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide) assay and free oxygen radical species (ROS) production was assessed by flow cytometry. Antioxidant activity of the two enantiomers and the racemic form of thioctic acid was also evaluated in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) used as an in vivo model of increased oxidative stress. A 3-h exposure of PC12 cells to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) significantly decreased cell viability and increased levels of intracellular ROS production. Pre-treatment with racemic thioctic acid or (+)-enantiomer significantly inhibited H2O2-induced decrease in cell viability from the concentration of 50 μmol/L and 20 μmol/L, respectively. Racemic thioctic acid and (+)-salt decreased levels of intracellular ROS, which were unaffected by (−)-thioctic acid. In the brain of SHR, the occurrence of astrogliosis and neuronal damage, with a decreased expression of neurofilament 200 kDa were observed. Treatment of SHR for 30 days with (+)-thioctic acid reduced the size of astrocytes and increased the neurofilament immunoreaction. The above findings could contribute to clarify the role played by thioctic acid in central nervous system injury related to oxidative stress. The more pronounced effect of (+)-thioctic acid observed in this study may have practical therapeutic implications worthy of being investigated in further preclinical and clinical studies.
oxidative stress; thioctic acid; brain; spontaneously hypertensive rats; PC12 cells
Oxidative stress results from an imbalance between production of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS and RNS, respectively) and endogenous antioxidant defense mechanisms. Increased generation of ROS/RNS is implicated in the pathogenesis of a variety of human diseases, including neurodegenerative disease, atherosclerosis, cancer and aging. However, measuring oxidative stress in biological systems is complex and requires accurate quantification of either free radicals or damaged biomolecules. One method to quantify oxidative injury is to measure lipid peroxidation. Lipids are readily attacked by free radicals, resulting in the formation of a number of peroxidation products. F2-isoprostanes (F2-IsoPs) are one group of these compounds and they are derived by the free radical peroxidation of arachidonic acid (AA). The F2-IsoPs, prostaglandine F2-like compounds, provide an accurate measure of oxidative stress both in vitro and in vivo. This protocol details current methodology used to quantify these molecules using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS).
F2-isoprostanes; oxidative damage; lipid peroxidation; reactive oxygen species
In recent years, there has been a great deal of attention toward the field of free radical chemistry. Free radicals reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species are generated by our body by various endogenous systems, exposure to different physiochemical conditions or pathological states. A balance between free radicals and antioxidants is necessary for proper physiological function. If free radicals overwhelm the body's ability to regulate them, a condition known as oxidative stress ensues. Free radicals thus adversely alter lipids, proteins, and DNA and trigger a number of human diseases. Hence application of external source of antioxidants can assist in coping this oxidative stress. Synthetic antioxidants such as butylated hydroxytoluene and butylated hydroxyanisole have recently been reported to be dangerous for human health. Thus, the search for effective, nontoxic natural compounds with antioxidative activity has been intensified in recent years. The present review provides a brief overview on oxidative stress mediated cellular damages and role of dietary antioxidants as functional foods in the management of human diseases.
Ageing; antioxidant; free radicals; oxidative stress