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Arch Pharm Res. 2005 Jul;28(7):775-83.

Antioxidative constituents from Paeonia lactiflora.

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College of Pharmacy, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 200-701, Korea


The ethanol extract of the peony root (Paeonia Lactiflora Pall, Paeoniaceae) as well as its major active components including gallic acid and methyl gallate were evaluated for their protective effects against free radical generation and lipid peroxidation. In addition, the protective effects against hydrogen peroxide-induced oxidative DNA damage in a mammalian cell line were examined. The ethanol extracts of the peony root (PREs) and its active constituents, gallic acid and methyl gallate, exhibited a significant free radical scavenging effect against 1,1-diphenyl-2-picryl hydrazine (DPPH) radical generation and had an inhibitory effect on lipid peroxidation, as measured by the level of malondialdehyde (MDA) formation. The PREs did not have any pro-oxidant effect. They strongly inhibited the hydrogen peroxide-induced DNA damage from NIH/3T3 fibroblasts, as assessed by single cell gel electrophoresis. Furthermore, the oral administration of 50% PRE (50% ethanol extract of peony root), gallic acid and methyl gallate potently inhibited the formation of micronucleated reticulocytes (MNRET) in the mouse peripheral blood induced by a KBrO3 treatment in vivo. Therefore, PREs containing gallic acid and methyl gallate may be a useful antigenotoxic antioxidant by scavenging free radicals, inhibiting lipid peroxidation and protecting against oxidative DNA damage without exhibiting any pro-oxidant effect.

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