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Mech Ageing Dev. 2004 Jul;125(7):507-12.

L-carnitine and DL-alpha-lipoic acid reverse the age-related deficit in glutathione redox state in skeletal muscle and heart tissues.

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Department of Medical Biochemistry, Dr. AL Mudaliar Post Graduate Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Madras, Taramani Campus, Chennai 600 113, India.


In the present study, the glutathione redox system was evaluated as a function of age in rat heart and muscle. A decline in reduced glutathione (GSH) levels is associated with aging and many age-related diseases. The objective of this study was to determine whether L-carnitine and DL-alpha-lipoic acid could compensate for GSH depletion in protection against oxidative insults. In this study we determined reduced glutathione, oxidized glutathione (GSSG), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione reductase (GR), and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH) in skeletal muscle and heart of young and aged rats. We also calculated GSH/GSSG molar ratio and glutathione redox system. GSH levels were significantly lowered in aged rats than young rats. Conversely, GSSG levels were significantly high in aged rats. GSH/GSSG molar ratio and redox index were found to decreased in aged rats. The activities of GPx, GR, and G6PDH were found to be decreased in aged rats when compared with young rats. Supplementation of carnitine and lipoic acid to aged rats significantly increased the GSH levels thereby increasing the activity of GPx, GR, and G6PDH in skeletal muscle and heart of aged rats. In conclusion, our study suggests that supplementation of carnitine and lipoic acid to aged rats improves the glutathione redox system.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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