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Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Aug;76(2):303-10.

Oxidative DNA damage in human white blood cells in dietary antioxidant intervention studies.

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Institute of Public Health, The Panum Institute, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.


Many epidemiologic studies have addressed the possible preventive effects of antioxidants in disease causation and progression. With the use of molecular techniques, it is feasible to investigate specific properties of antioxidants in intervention studies. The most widely used techniques to investigate oxidative DNA damage in white blood cells are the measurement of 7-hydroxy-8-oxo-2'-deoxyguanosine and the comet assay. The types of antioxidant intervention studies include those involving single or multiple supplementations of vitamin C, vitamin E, or carotenoids and those involving various natural food products (eg, carrot juice). In short-term intervention studies (usually weeks or a few months), results have been mixed. Single-dosing studies found that decreased oxidative DNA damage lasted only hours after antioxidant supplementation, suggesting that the preventive effect is relatively short. In addition, many of the positive studies were not placebo-controlled, thus leaving a possibility of false-positive results caused by period effects, eg, seasonal variation, changes in the lifestyles of the subjects, or variation in measurements over time. Because participation in an antioxidant intervention study may cause changes in dietary habits and because seasonal changes may have profound effects, it is recommended that future studies have a placebo-controlled, parallel design rather than a crossover design.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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