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Anticancer Res. 2010 Jul;30(7):2721-5.

Effect of astaxanthin supplementation on inflammation and cardiac function in BALB/c mice.

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School of Food Science, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164, USA.


Astaxanthin is an antioxidant with immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties. This study evaluated the use of dietary astaxanthin to decrease oxidative stress and improve cardiac function, thereby providing a potential cardioprotective supplement. Female BALB/c mice (8 weeks of age) were fed a semi-synthetic diet containing 0, 0.02 or 0.08% astaxanthin for 8 weeks. Cardiac function was assessed by echocardiography bi-weekly, and blood and tissue samples were collected at 8 weeks. Plasma astaxanthin concentrations increased (p<0.05) dose-dependently to 0.5 and 4 mumol/l in the astaxanthin-supplemented mice. Blood glutathione concentrations and lymphocyte mitochondrial membrane potential were not significantly affected by astaxanthin treatment. However, mice fed 0.08% astaxanthin had higher (p<0.05) heart mitochondrial membrane potential and contractility index compared to the control group. These results support the possible use of dietary astaxanthin for cardiac protection.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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