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Eur Respir J. 2008 Jan;31(1):179-97. doi: 10.1183/09031936.00128106.

Air pollution, oxidative stress and dietary supplementation: a review.

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  • 1Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica, Av. Universidad No. 655, Col. Santa Maria Ahuacatitlan, Cuernavaca, Morelos 62508, Mexico. iromieu@correo.insp.mx

Abstract

The aim of the present review was to provide an up-to-date overview of the biological and epidemiological evidence of the role of oxidative stress as a major underlying feature of the toxic effect of air pollutants, and the potential role of dietary supplementation in enhancing antioxidant defences. A bibliographic search was conducted through PubMed. The keywords used in the search were "air pollutant", "oxidative stress", "inflammation", "antioxidant polyunsaturated fatty acids" and "genetics". In addition, the authors also searched for biomarkers of oxidative stress and nutrients. The review presents the most recent data on: the biological and epidemiological evidence of the oxidative stress response to air pollutants; the role of dietary supplementation as a modulator of these effects; and factors of inter-individual variation in human response. The methodology for further epidemiological studies will be discussed in order to improve the current understanding on how nutritional factors may act. There is substantial evidence that air pollution exposure results in increased oxidative stress and that dietary supplementation may play a modulating role on the acute effect of air pollutants. Further epidemiological studies should address the impact of supplementation strategies in the prevention of air-pollution-related long-term effects in areas where people are destined to be exposed for the distant future.

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