• Carvacrol;
  • Lymphocytes;
  • Lipid Peroxidation;
  • Oxidative DNA damage;
  • UVB radiation;
  • Reactive Oxygen Species


Exposure to ultraviolet B (UVB; 280–320 nm) radiation induces the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the biological system. In this study, we examined the protective effect of carvacrol on UVB-induced lipid peroxidation and oxidative DNA damage with reference to alterations in cellular antioxidant status in human lymphocytes. A series of in vitro assays (hydroxyl radical, superoxide, nitric oxide, DPPH (2,2-Diphenyl-1-picryl hydrazyl), and ABTS (2,2-azino-bis-3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid) radical scavenging assays) demonstrate antioxidant property of carvacrol in our study. UVB exposure significantly increased thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), lipid hydroperoxides (LHPs), % tail DNA and tail moment; decreased % cell viability and antioxidant status in UVB-irradiated lymphocytes. Treatment with carvacrol 30 min prior to UVB-exposure resulted in a significant decline of TBARS, LHP, % tail DNA, and tail moment and increased % cell viability as carvacrol concentration increased. UVB irradiated lymphocytes with carvacrol alone (at 10 μg/mL) gave no significant change in cell viability, TBARS, LHP, % tail DNA, and tail moment when compared with normal lymphocytes. On the basis of our results, we conclude that carvacrol, a dietary antioxidant, mediates its protective effect through modulation of UVB-induced ROS. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biochem Mol Toxicol 00:1–11, 2010; Published online in Wiley InterScience ( DOI 10.1002/jbt.20355