Strategies of antioxidant defense

Authors

  • Helmut SIES

    Corresponding author
    1. Institut für Physiologische Chemie I, Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf, Germany
      Correspondence to H. Sies, Institut für Physiologische Chemie I, Moorenstrasse 5, W-4000 Düsseldorf 1, Germany
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  • Note. Dedicated to Professor Britton Chance on the occasion of his 80th birthday on July on 24, 1993.

Correspondence to H. Sies, Institut für Physiologische Chemie I, Moorenstrasse 5, W-4000 Düsseldorf 1, Germany

Abstract

Cellular protection against the deleterious effects of reactive oxidants generated in aerobic metabolism, called oxidative stress, is organized at multiple levels. Defense strategies include three levels of protection; prevention, interception, and repair. Regulation of the antioxidant capacity includes the maintenance of adequate levels of antioxidant and the localization of antioxidant compounds and enzymes. Short-term and long-term adaptation and cell specialisation in these functions are new areas of interest. Control over the activity of prooxidant enzymes, such as NADPH oxidase and NO synthases, is crucial. Synthetic antioxidants mimic biological strategies.

Abbreviations
ARE

antioxidant responsive element

SOD

superoxide dismutase

GSH

glutathione

GSSG

glutathione disulfide