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Chem Biol Interact. 2011 Apr 25;190(2-3):121-8. doi: 10.1016/j.cbi.2011.02.009. Epub 2011 Feb 21.

Alleviation of iron induced oxidative stress by the grape fruit flavanone naringin in vitro.

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Department of Zoology, Mizoram University, Aizawl 796 004 India.


Iron is an essential element that participates in several metabolic activities of cells; however, excess iron is a major cause of iron-induced oxidative stress and several human diseases. The protective effect of naringin, a grape fruit flavanone, was studied in iron overloaded isolated mouse liver mitochondria, where the isolated mitochondrial fraction was incubated with various concentrations of naringin before ferric ion loading. Iron overloading of mitochondrial fraction resulted in an increase in lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, and DNA damage, whereas iron overload reduced the glutathione (GSH) concentration, glutathione-S-transferase (GST), glutathione peroxidase (GSHPx), catalase and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activities. Pretreatment of mitochondrial fraction with naringin inhibited iron-induced lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, and DNA damage. Conversely, naringin supplementation arrested iron-induced depletion in the GSH contents, GSHPx, GST, SOD and catalase activities significantly. Ferric iron reduction assay revealed that naringin could not reduce ferric iron into ferrous iron indicating that it did not exhibit prooxidant activity. Iron free coordination site assay indicated that naringin was unable to occupy all the active sites of iron indicating that naringin did not completely chelate iron. Our study demonstrates that naringin was able to share the burden of endogenous oxidants by inhibiting the iron-induced depletion of all important antioxidant enzymes as well as GSH and may act as a good antioxidant.

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