Antioxidant Activity

GSH exerts various antioxidant activities that produce GSSG [24,26,27].

From: Nutrition and Skeletal Muscle, 2019

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Biological macromolecules as antioxidants

T. Madhujith, ... D.A.S. Gamage, in Biological Macromolecules, 2022

6.4.2 Other applications

Antioxidant activity of bioactive macromolecules is important in regulating the redox state of the body and thereby, reducing the damage caused by diseases or drugs. Several studies have confirmed the antioxidant activity and immunostimulatory activities of polypeptides extracted from natural sources. These biological properties exhibited in macromolecules claimed their potential applications in drug development (Song et al., 2020). Chitooligosaccharide derivatives which are derived from chitosan also exhibit potential application in the pharmaceutical and medicinal industry owing to their beneficial biological effects viz. antioxidant, antimicrobial, anticancer, and antidiabetic properties (Zhang et al., 2012). On the other hand, chitin and chitosan possess unique biochemical properties including biocompatibility, biodegradability, nontoxicity, and ability to form films. These properties greatly contribute to chitin and chitosan being potential candidates in biomedical applications (Elieh-Ali-Komi & Hamblin, 2016). Furthermore, antioxidant peptides are significant attention in the skincare industry owing to their ability to remove ROS and free radicals to protect skin cells, slow down aging, and inhibit melanin production(Song et al., 2020).

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The Use of Natural Compounds and Botanicals in the Development of Anti-Aging Skin Care Products

Cindy K. Angerhofer, ... Paolo U. Giacomoni, in Skin Aging Handbook, 2009

10.2.1 Botanical Antioxidants

Antioxidant activity is an excellent example of a functional benefit that plant extracts can deliver. Plants are known to contain a variety of natural antioxidants that protect and preserve their physical and metabolic integrity as well as their heredity by way of their seeds. Many of these extracts and compounds from plants are emerging as candidates for moderating the effects of the aging process on skin by limiting biochemical consequences of oxidation.

Compounds such as vitamin C, vitamin E and rosmarinic acid (RA) are commonly used in foods as well as cosmetics for their potent antioxidant activity that aids in product stability. Reduction in oxidation has a clear benefit for the product as well as for skin, and the consumer perception of antioxidants is a positive one, making them particularly attractive as cosmetic ingredients. The danger is that the use of a single antioxidant is often positioned as a panacea. The phenomenon of the product that contains the “most potent antioxidant ever discovered” belies the scientific understanding that antioxidants work in synergy. The physiological codependence of water soluble vitamin C and lipophilic vitamin E is well accepted. Plant antioxidants differ not only in redox potential and solubility, but also in their mechanism of action. Some quench one or more ROS such as superoxide, hydroxyl radicals, or singlet oxygen. Others inhibit activity or expression of oxidative enzymes, or enhance activity or expression of antioxidative compounds or enzymes like catalase, or chelate oxidizing metal ions, or act by other mechanisms, known and unknown. Given the variety of chemical structures and biological mechanisms of antioxidants described from plants, it is not surprising that not all antioxidants confer the same degree of functional protection to the skin.

The small molecular weight antioxidants that are naturally found in skin include compounds synthesized by skin cells such as glutathione and ubiquinol as well as those assimilated from plant sources in the diet such as vitamin E, vitamin C, and retinoids. They function synergistically in some cases but also operate as part of independently-regulated systems to address challenges to the redox status of the cell or the tissue.20

Since many relatively simple bioassays are readily available for assessment of antioxidant activity, a large number of plant compounds and extracts have been shown to act as antioxidants in vitro, and many have also demonstrated the capacity to reduce oxidative stress in skin in vivo as well as skin cells in vitro. This activity may well be expected to protect aging cells; however, as will be seen in the examples below, many antioxidant compounds display additional biological activities such as inhibition of inflammation or modulation of gene transcription that may not be exclusively related to antioxidant activity, and this uncertainty can thwart simple attempts to associate antioxidant activity in and of itself with a predictable clinical benefit.

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Eryngium campestre L.: Polyphenolic and Flavonoid Compounds; Applications to Health and Disease

Bouzidi Soumia, in Polyphenols: Mechanisms of Action in Human Health and Disease (Second Edition), 2018

6.1 Antioxidant Activity

Antioxidant activity of the methanol extract of E. campestre aerial parts and the isolated flavonols were evaluated using free radical DPPH scavenging assay and reducing power assay. E. campestre methanol extract exhibited relatively high DPPH scavenging activity (66.3%). Among the isolated compounds, rutin showed the highest DPPH free radical scavenging activity (56.2%). It was found that E. campestre extract revealed significant reducing power (1.8). Quercetin 3-O-β-glucuronide-4′-methylether, isorhamnetin 3-O-β-glucoside-7-O-α-rhamnoside, and rutin showed relatively similar reducing power activity (1.47, 1.43, and 1.34 absorbance at 700 nm, respectively) [16].

In recent research, the antioxidant activity of essential oil distilled from the aerial parts was assessed using three different assays (DPPH, FRAP, ABTS); essential oil seemed to act as a moderate reducing agent (FRAP assay), but on the other hand, no activity was observed for E. campestre essential oil in both DPPH and ABTS assays [40].

In a study by Nebija et al. [4], ethanol extracts from the aerial parts and roots were tested for in vitro antioxidant activity by four various testing systems: DPPH assay, inhibition of production of hydroxyl radical, β-carotene bleaching assay, and inhibition of lipid peroxidation. The results suggest that, in the DPPH system, ethanol extract of root of E. campestre exhibited higher radical-scavenging activity (IC50 = 0.72 mg/mL) compared to the extract of the aerial part (IC50 = 1.14 mg/mL). On the other hand, aerial part ethanol extract has exhibited stronger inhibition capacity on the production of hydroxyl radicals in the deoxyribose system than the root extract (50% and 45%, respectively). However, both ethanol extracts of E. campestre exhibited low antioxidant activity in β-carotene bleaching assay, as well as low capacity for inhibition of spontaneous lipid peroxidation in rat liver homogenate.

In our previous study [27], the antioxidant properties of various extracts (butanol, water and ethyl acetate) from both roots and aerial parts of Algerian Eryngium campestre L. were investigated using DPPH radical scavenging and β-carotene linoleic acid assays. According to the results of our investigation, butanol extract of the aerial parts showed the lowest IC50 value (16.140 μg/mL). However, roots aqueous extract showed the highest inhibition of oxidation (89.78%).

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Ocimum sanctum Linn. (Holy Basil) to Improve Cognition

Vijayasree V. Giridharan PhD, ... Tetsuya Konishi PhD, in Diet and Nutrition in Dementia and Cognitive Decline, 2015

Antioxidant Activity

The antioxidant activity of OS has been reported by many workers. Antioxidant activity of the flavonoids (orientin and vicenin) in vivo was expressed in a significant reduction in the radiation-induced lipid peroxidation in mouse liver [12]. OS extract has significant ability to scavenge highly reactive free radicals [13]. OS extract provides significant protection against cadmium-induced toxicity in Wistar albino rats by improving antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), reduced glutathione (GSH), and vitamin C (ascorbate) levels [14].

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Antioxidant Activity of Caffeine

Ester Tellone, ... Silvana Ficarra, in Coffee in Health and Disease Prevention, 2015

92.4 Summary Points

Antioxidant activity of CF in RBC guarantees the following:

structural integrity of the CDB3 responsible for the functionality of the anionic exchanger HCO3/Cl from which, in turn, depend the stability of the membrane and the RBC life cycle;

correct adjustment of the G6P metabolic fluxes, toward PPP, which ensures adequate availability of NADPH and EMP, which produces ATP;

adequate release of ATP (which contribute to the caspase stability) “free” to cross the erythrocyte membrane, stimulating the purinergic receptors located on vascular epithelium, leading to NO endothelial synthesis;

promotion of calcium release from intracellular stores with activation of NOS, resulting in production of NO, which contributes to inhibit the activation of caspase;

stability of the R conformational state of Hb and consequent inactivation of GE (caused by their binding to CDB3), which drives the RBC metabolism toward a preferential channeling of G6P in the PPP with increase of NADPH production useful to counteract the generation of O2;

strong scavenger activity against the dangerous radical OH;

antioxidant activity toward the strong ROS generator, t-BHT;

stability of the phospho-dephosphorylation balance;

increase of the B3 activity in HOS (the kinetic increases by a factor of 3 compared to LOS), which contextually promotes the assumption of O2 in the lung and massive removal of CO2 and ONOO, by preventing the generation of secondary radicals.

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Antioxidant Property Is the Basic Feature of Kampo Medicine

Tetsuya Konishi, in Japanese Kampo Medicines for the Treatment of Common Diseases: Focus on Inflammation, 2017

Antioxidant Properties of Kampo Formulas and Herbal Components

As antioxidant activity is the basic factor of food function and also plays an important role in herbal medicine function, the antioxidant activity of many herbal resources and Kampo formulas has been studied and much information has accumulated. However, the term “antioxidant” comprises rather complex features; for example, there are several methods to evaluate antioxidant activity and the unit to show the potential, such as ferric-reducing antioxidant power (FRAP), radical scavenging potency, Trolox equivalent antioxidant capacity, and oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC). Therefore, it is often difficult to make comparisons of the antioxidant activities of interest obtained by the many fragmented studies so far published. Some systematic surveys of series of foods and herbs using the same method and conditions are provided for the public as databases (Nishimura et al., 2011; Paur et al., 2011). For example, Carlsen et al. (2010) measured the FRAP activity of more than 3100 foods, beverages, spices, herbs, and supplements and some Kampo formulas provided worldwide (Carlsen et al., 2010). According to the data, traditional medicines and their component herbs formed a category of high antioxidant activity, although a large variation is present among them, such that the mean and median values are 91.7 and 14.2 mmol/100 g, respectively. Among them, goshuyutou is one of the Kampo formulas showing a high antioxidant potential, 132.6–706.3 mmol/100 g. The FRAP values of some Kampo formulas picked up from the database are given in Table 4.1.

Table 4.1. Antioxidant Activity of Some Kampo Formulas Measured by Ferric-Reducing Antioxidant Power

Kampo Formula Antioxidant Content (mmol/100 g)
Goshuyuto 132.58
Hochuekkito 9.67
Juzentaihoto 14.2
Saikokeishito 21.4
Hangebyakujutsutemmato 5.15

Selected from NCBI bookshelf www.ncbi.nlm.gov/books/NBK92763/.

A series of Kampo formulas and component herbs was also systematically measured by the ORAC method. From the data provided by Nishimura et al. (2011), some formulas used frequently to treat symptoms related to psychological (upper four in the table) and gastrointestinal (lower three) disorders were selected, and their antioxidant activities in ORAC units compared with daily dose are shown in Table 4.2. All showed rather high ORAC values; however, there was no characteristic tendency between the formulas applied for mental or psychological dysfunctions and those for gastrointestinal symptoms. This also indicates that antioxidant property plays certain common roles in Kampo medicine.

Table 4.2. Antioxidant Activity of Kampo Formulas Used for Mental and Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Kampo Formula ORAC Unit (Formula/Day)
Kakkonto 3469
Kososan 3390
Yokukansankachimpihange 3151
Saikokeishikankyoto 3041
Orengedokuto 2771
Bukuryouingohangekobokuto 2518
Keishikashakuyakuto 3425
Ogikenchuto 2174
Keishikashakuyakuto 1797

Selected from Nishimura et al., 2011. EBCAM, Article ID 81263.

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Mitochondria as a target for monoterpenes

Rodrigo Cabral Luiz, Alessandra Lourenço Cecchini, in Mitochondrial Physiology and Vegetal Molecules, 2021

4 Protective effects of monoterpenes

Antioxidant activity (Fig. 3) is one of the major protective effects of monoterpenes, and it is involved in the prevention of carcinogenesis, aging, ischemia/reperfusion injuries, neurodegenerative, and cardiovascular diseases, among others. Citral, carvone, α-phellandrene, and β-myrcene are examples of monoterpenes with direct antioxidant capacity. All these monoterpenes present conjugated double bonds. Monoterpenes with no conjugated double bonds, such as citronellal, cannot directly neutralize reactive species (Wojtunik-Kulesza et al., 2019). For cyclic monoterpenes, such as eugenol, the number of hydroxyl groups seems to be important to the antioxidant capacity (Gülçin, 2011).

Fig. 3. Main mechanisms involved in protective effects of monoterpenes.

Credits: Own authorship.

Monoterpenes can also increase cellular antioxidant capacity via the nuclear factor E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) (Fig. 3). For example, geraniol increased the expression of the Nrf2 gene (Jayachandran et al., 2015), whereas citral and perillaldehyde were able to activate Nrf2 signaling (Ka et al., 2015; Fuyuno et al., 2018). Nrf2 responds to stressing signals (including OS). In this situation, Nrf2 is stabilized by KEAP1 and translocates to the nucleus to trigger the expression of phase II detoxification enzymes (glutathione S-transferases and NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase) and antioxidant proteins (superoxide dismutase 3, glutathione peroxidase, peroxiredoxin, sulfiredoxin, etc.) (Ma, 2013).

Another discussed property of monoterpenes is the antiinflammatory effect (Fig. 3). In many cases, monoterpenes interfere with NF-κB signaling, preventing it from reaching the nucleus and promote inflammation, angiogenesis, cell survival and proliferation, adhesion, invasion, and metastasis (Liu et al., 2017) (Fig. 2). Citral (Sanches et al., 2017), eucalyptol (Lee et al., 2017), geraniol (Cho et al., 2016), and linalool (Gunaseelan et al., 2017) are examples of monoterpenes that inhibit NF-κB signaling. Many carcinogenic agents trigger the inflammatory process, which explains the protective effects observed for citral against UVB-induced carcinogenesis (Kremer et al., 2019); citronellol against DMBA-induced mammary carcinogenesis; linalool against UVB-induced lesions (Gunaseelan et al., 2017), and others. Another molecule involved in the inflammatory response is COX-2. This enzyme is responsible for the generation of prostaglandins and can also be induced by OS (Goradel et al., 2019). Direct inhibitory effect or downregulation of COX-2 gene expression was described for linalool (Gunaseelan et al., 2017), eucalyptol (Lee et al., 2017), geraniol (Cho et al., 2016), and others. It is important to highlight that the reduction of the inflammatory process contributes to the protection against oxidative lesions since inflammatory process is involved in the OS generation (Mittal et al., 2014).

The antioxidant and antiinflammatory actions of monoterpenes are also reported in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) studies, as well as in τ-protein phosphorylation signaling, amyloid-beta formation, aggregation, toxicity, and clearance (Habtemariam, 2018).

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Allium cepa

V. Kuete, in Medicinal Spices and Vegetables from Africa, 2017

4.5 Antioxidant effects

The antioxidant activity of onion and onion scales has been studied in several models including in lipid oxidation models and in radical scavenging assays (Lawande, 2012). It was found that both yellow and red onions were poor antioxidants toward oxidation on methyl linoleate (Kahkonen et al., 1999; Lawande, 2012) in contrast to their high antioxidant activities toward oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) (Vinson et al., 2001). Onion also demonstrated a poor antioxidant score in the oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) activity test (Kahkonen et al., 1999; Lawande, 2012). Content of health-promoting phenols and the deriving antioxidant activity of onion was found to considerably vary among the investigated cultivars (Lisanti et al., 2015). Onion extract showed protective effects against doxorubicin-induced hepatotoxicity due to the antioxidant properties as evidenced by the decrease of tissue malondialdehyde and glutathione levels, increase of superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase in rats (Mete et al., 2013). Onion extract also antagonized the toxic effects of aluminum chloride and improved the antioxidant status of male rat via decrease in superoxide dismutase and catalase activities (Ige and Akhigbe, 2012). The antioxidant role of compound 21 derived from onion on aldehyde oxidase (OX-LDL) and hepatocytes apoptosis in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats was reported (Bakhshaeshi et al., 2012).

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Valeriana sp.: The Role in Ameliorating High-Altitude Ailments

Jigni Mishra, Kshipra Misra, in Management of High Altitude Pathophysiology, 2018

4.6.6 Antioxidant Activity

The antioxidant activity of VW root extracts and essential oils was evaluated by DPPH method (Sudhanshu et al., 2012; Thusoo et al., 2014). For both types of samples under study, results showed appreciable free radical scavenging and metal chelating activities. Total phenolic content, total flavonoids content, total ascorbic acid, free radical scavenging activity, hydroxyl radical and peroxynitrite scavenging activity, and prevention of oxidative DNA damage also were studied in methanolic extracts of VW where substantially effective antioxidant values were observed (Kalim et al., 2010).

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Tannins and Related Compounds from Medicinal Plants of Africa

Abdelaaty A. Shahat, Mohamed S. Marzouk, in Medicinal Plant Research in Africa, 2013

13.1.4.1.1 Antioxidant Activity of HTs

The antioxidant activity of tannins in foods and beverages was first demonstrated when their influence in suppressing the oxidation of ascorbic acid came to light. Later [49], the effect of tannins on Cu (II)-catalyzed auto-oxidation of ascorbic acid was studied by kinetic and electron spin resonance (ESR) measurements. In these studies, geraniin (8), isolated from Geranium thunbergii, showed marked inhibitory effects, attributable to its radical scavenging activity (stable ESR) rather than to Cu (II)-blocking, while the inhibitory effect of lower MW polyphenols as GA was low (unstable ESR), where low potent compounds give unstable or no ESR signals [50].

Tannins exhibit remarkable inhibitory effects on lipid peroxidation (LP) induced by adenine 5′-diphosphate (ADP) and ascorbic acid in rat liver mitochondria, and on that induced by ADP and NADPH in rat liver microsomes. Almost complete inhibition of LP was exhibited in these two systems by some ETs, such as pedunculagin (6) and isoterchebin. In both systems, the inhibitory effects of most HTs were stronger than those of CTs. The dicaffeoyl-quinic acids isolated from genus Artemisia exhibited inhibitory effects through these systems [51] as well.

The radical scavenging ability of tannins was also manifested by their ability to scavenge the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical. The effect of licorice phenolics [52], and those of a number of polyphenols of various structures and origins, were generally stronger than those of α-tocopherol and ascorbic acid [53]. It was demonstrated, by an experiment employing alkyl gallate as the scavengers, that a stable free radical was generated from these polyphenols upon scavenging the DPPH radical. In this experiment, formation of the gallate radical was proved by ESR measurement and by isolation in a high yield of dialkyl 3,4,5,3′,4′,5′-hexahydroxydiphenoyl (HHDP) produced by the mutual coupling of the transient C-centered galloyl radicals [54]. Two ETs, pedunculagin (6) and 2,3-(S)-hexahydroxydiphenoyl-d-glucose, isolated from Rubus coreanus [55], showed much higher potency as antioxidants using DPPH and LP generation systems mediated by addition of H2O2 to relatively homogenate thiobarbituric acid reactive substances assay (TBARS). The antioxidant activity of pomegranate juice, high percentage of punicalagin (7) and pedunculagin, was found to be three times higher than that of green tea [56] using the ABTS, DPPH, DMPD, and FRAP methods. Tannins isolated from Terminalia catappa, especially punicalagin and punicalin, exhibited potent antioxidant activity; their LP activity was quantified by measuring TBARS [57–59]. Crude tannins of Canola and rapeseed hull extract exhibited significant antioxidant activity, evaluated by β-carotene-linoleate, DPPH radical, and reducing power assay [60]. The two ETs thonningianins A and B, isolated from Thonningia sanguinea, as well as ellagic acid 3,4-methylene-dioxy-3′-O-methyl-4′-O-glucoside and ellagic acid 3,3′-di-O-methyl ether, isolated from Pteleopsis hylodendron, exert a strong free radical scavenging activity against DPPH, as shown by ESR analysis (Figure 13.13) [61,62].

Figure 13.13. Effect of thonningianins A and B on the ESR signals of DPPH (100 μM, EtOH), where the spectra were recorded 40 s after mixing.

In an investigation of the protective effects exerted by tannins against oxidative damage induced in mouse ocular lenses by incubation with xanthine-xanthine oxidase ADP and Fe+3 (X-XOD system), geraniin and pentagalloyl glucose markedly decreased LP concentration in the lens [63]. Also, it was found that tannic acid (TA) is more efficient than its main component, GA, when studied by its effect on OH radical and singlet oxygen mediated cleavage of plasmid DNA and ESR [64]. The natural food additive “eucalyptus leaf extract” showed strong antioxidative activity by several assays, mostly attributed to the GA and EA present in the extract [65]. In addition, it was found that black currants have much higher antioxidant activity than highbush blueberries and boysenberries due to higher content of polyphenols [66]. The leaves of Fragaria vesca showed significant antioxidant activity on DPPH and photoperoxidation of linoleic acid due to its ETs and EA [67].

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