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Am J Physiol. 1995 Jun;268(6 Pt 2):R1386-93.

Antioxidant defenses and metabolic depression in a pulmonate land snail.

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Institute of Biochemistry, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.


During arousal from estivation oxygen consumption by land snails (Otala lactea) increases severalfold. To determine whether snails prepared for an accompanying rise in the rates of oxyradical generation by altering their antioxidant defense mechanisms, changes in the activities of antioxidant enzymes and lipid peroxidation products were quantified in foot and hepatopancreas of control, 30-day estivating, and aroused snails. Compared with controls, estivating O. lactea showed significant increases in the activities of foot muscle superoxide dismutase (SOD) (increasing by 56-67%), catalase (51-72%), and glutathione S-transferase (79-108%), whereas, in hepatopancreas, SOD (57-78%) and glutathione peroxidase (93-144%) increased. Within 40 min after arousal began, hepatopancreas glutathione peroxidase activity had returned to control values, but SOD showed a further 70% increase in activity but then returned to control levels by 80 min. Estivation had no effect on total glutathione (GSH + 2 GSSG) concentrations in tissues, but GSSG content had increased about twofold in both organs of 30-day dormant snails. Lipid peoxidation (quantified as thiobarbituric acid reactive substances) was significantly enhanced at the onset of arousal from dormancy, indicating that oxidative stress and tissue damage occurred at this time. The data suggest that antioxidant defenses in snail organs are increased while snails are in the hypometabolic state as a preparation for oxidative stress during arousal.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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