• oxidative stress;
  • ataxia telangiectasia;
  • TEAC;
  • vitamins

Highly reactive oxygen species (ROS) are involved in T-cell activation and in the defense against environmental pathogens. An imbalance of ROS generation and detoxifying scavenger enzymes could contribute to the increased susceptibility to cancer and infections in ataxia telangiectasia. We studied oxidative status, i.e. plasma total antioxidant capacity (TEAC), retinol, α-tocopherol, ubiquinol, and the number of activated T cells in 10 patients with ataxia telangiectasia (AT) compared to age-matched healthy controls. As expected, patients showed significantly increased levels of activated human leukocyte antigen-DR and CD45RO expressing T cells. TEAC levels as well as the exogenous antioxidants retinol and α-tocopherol were significantly reduced in patients. In addition, patients showed slightly reduced plasma levels of the endogenous ROS scavenger enzyme ubiquinol (Q10). Although no correlation between number of activated T-cells and antioxidant capacity could be demonstrated, an increase in ROS and a diminished reactive oxygen scavenger capacity may be involved in the disease process of patients with AT.