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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2008 Sep 19;374(2):248-52. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2008.07.032. Epub 2008 Jul 16.

Lycopene suppresses ovalbumin-induced airway inflammation in a murine model of asthma.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Pusan National University College of Medicine, Busan 602-739, Republic of Korea.


In this study, we attempt to determine whether lycopene regulates inflammatory mediators in the ovalbumin (OVA)-induced murine asthma model. To address this, mice were sensitized and challenged with OVA, and then treated with lycopene before the last OVA challenge. Administration of lycopene significantly alleviated the OVA-induced airway hyperresponsiveness to inhaled methacholine. Administration of lycopene also resulted in a significant inhibition of the infiltration of inflammatory immunocytes into the bronchoalveolar lavage, and attenuated the gelatinolytic activity of matrix metalloproteinase-9 and the expression of eosinophil peroxidase. Additionally, lycopene reduced the increased levels of GATA-3 mRNA level and IL-4 expression in OVA-challenged mice. However, it increased T-bet mRNA level and IFN-gamma expression in lycopene-challenged mice. These findings provide new insight into the immunopharmacological role of lycopene in terms of its effects in a murine model of asthma.

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