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J Agric Food Chem. 2007 Mar 21;55(6):2446-51. Epub 2007 Feb 27.

Quercetin increases oxidative stress resistance and longevity in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

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  • 1Centro de Investigação em Química, Departamento de Química, Faculdade de Ciências, IBMC, Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular, Grupo de Microbiologia Celular e Aplicada, Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal.


Quercetin, the major flavonol found in several fruits and vegetables, is a natural antioxidant with potential anticancer and antiaging activities. In this paper, the effect of quercetin in Sacharomyces cerevisiae cells submitted to oxidative stress was studied. Hydrogen peroxide resistance increased in cells pretreated with quercetin. Cellular protection was correlated with a decrease in oxidative stress markers, namely, levels of reactive oxygen species, glutathione oxidation, protein carbonylation, and lipid peroxidation. The acquisition of H2O2 resistance was not associated with the induction of antioxidant defenses or with iron chelation. Oxidative stress is a limiting factor for longevity. In agreement, quercetin also increased 60% chronological life span. These results support the utilization of yeast as a useful model to screen in vivo for natural antioxidants with putative health beneficial effects.

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