Paediatrics Publications

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Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences





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PURPOSE: Our working hypothesis is that single bioactive phytochemicals with antioxidant properties that are important constituents of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and their defined mixtures have potential as chemoprotective agents for chronic conditions characterized by oxidative and nitrosative stress, including Alzheimer’s. Here we evaluate the ability of baicalein, crocetin, trans-resveratrol or schisanhenol and two defined mixtures of these TCM phytochemicals to attenuate the toxicity resulting from exposure to cell permeant t-butyl hydroperoxide (tBPH) in wild-type and bioengineered (to express choline acetyltransferase) HEK 293 cells. METHODS: Endpoints of tBHP-initiated oxidative and nitrosative stress in both types of HEK 293 cells and its attenuation by TCM constituents and mixtures included cytotoxicity (LDH release); depletion of intracellular glutathione (GSH); formation of S-glutathionylated proteins; oxidative changes to the disulfide proteome; and real-time changes in intracellular redox status. RESULTS: At low µM concentrations, each of the TCM constituents and mixtures effectively attenuated intracellular toxicity due to exposure of HEK 293 cells to 50 or 250 µM tBHP for 30 min to 3 h. Confocal microscopy of HEK 293 cells transfected with mutated green fluorescent protein (roGFP2) showed effective attenuation of tBHP oxidation by baicalein in real time. Three redox-regulated proteins prominent in the disulfide proteome of HEK 293 cells were identified by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that single TCM chemicals and their simple mixtures have potential for use in adjunct chemoprotective therapy. Advantages of mixtures compared to single TCM constituents include the ability to combine compounds with varying molecular mechanisms of cytoprotection for enhanced biological activity; and to combine chemicals with complementary pharmacokinetic properties to increase half-life and prolong activity in vivo.