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Histochem Cell Biol. 2012 Jun;137(6):811-27. doi: 10.1007/s00418-012-0926-3. Epub 2012 Feb 14.

Quantitative evaluation of the beneficial effects in the mdx mouse of epigallocatechin gallate, an antioxidant polyphenol from green tea.

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Pharmacology, Geneva-Lausanne School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Geneva, 30 Quai Ernest Ansermet, 1211, Geneva 4, Switzerland.


In two separate previous studies, we reported that subcutaneous (sc) or oral administration of (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) limited the development of muscle degeneration of mdx mice, a mild phenotype model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). However, it was not possible to conclude which was the more efficient route of EGCG administration because different strains of mdx mice, periods of treatment and methods of assessment were used. In this study, we investigated which administration routes and dosages of EGCG are the most effective for limiting the onset of dystrophic lesions in the same strain of mdx mice and applying the same methods of assessment. Three-week-old mdx mice were injected sc for 5 weeks with either saline or a daily average of 3 or 6 mg/kg EGCG. For comparison, age-matched mdx mice were fed for 5 weeks with either a diet containing 0.1% EGCG or a control diet. The effects of EGCG were assessed quantitatively by determining the activities of serum muscle-derived creatine kinase, isometric contractions of triceps surae muscles, integrated spontaneous locomotor activities, and oxidative stress and fibrosis in selected muscles. Oral administration of 180 mg/kg/day EGCG in the diet was found the most effective for significantly improving several parameters associated with muscular dystrophy. However, the improvements were slightly less than those observed previously for sc injection started immediately after birth. The efficacy of EGCG for limiting the development of dystrophic muscle lesions in mice suggests that EGCG may be of benefit for DMD patients.

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