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Acta Physiol Hung. 1991;78(1):3-9.

Effect of the bioflavonoid silymarin on the in vitro activity and expression of superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme.

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2nd Department of Medicine, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary.


Superoxide dismutase activity and expression of the erythrocytes and lymphocytes of patients suffering from chronic alcoholic liver disease and those of healthy controls were investigated after in vitro incubation with silymarin. It was concluded that silymarin treatment in a concentration achievable by in vivo treatment (10 micrograms/ml) significantly increased the SOD activity of both the erythrocytes and lymphocytes of patients with liver disease, whereas the SOD expression of the lymphocytes enhanced to a considerable extent. These results indirectly indicate that the scavenger silymarin is able to increase the antioxidant protection of the cells by ameliorating the deleterious effects of free radical reactions.

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