Saturday, July 24, 2010

Brazilian Propolis from May, June and August Has Highest Antioxidant Activity

The Role of Seasonality on the Inhibitory Effect of Brazilian Green Propolis on The Oxidative Metabolism of Neutrophils
Fitoterapia, Article in Press

The reactive oxygen species (ROS) produced by neutrophils are involved in the pathogenesis of several diseases, for which the intake of antioxidants could benefit patients either as a prophylactic or therapeutic treatment.

Propolis is among the known antioxidants, and its chemical composition may vary under the influence of seasonality, which may interfere in its biological properties.

This work evaluates the role of seasonality on the production of some important compounds of propolis samples produced monthly from November 2001 through October 2002 as well as the effect of these samples on the oxidative metabolism of stimulated neutrophils, by using both luminol and lucigenin to produce chemiluminescence (CLlum and CLluc, respectively).

The cytotoxicity of the most active extracts to neutrophils was also investigated. The inhibitory effect of the propolis samples varied significantly during the studied period for both assays (3.4 ± 1.1 to 16.0 ± 1.1 μg/mL for CLlum and 6.2 ± 2.0 to 30.0 ± 5.0 μg/mL for CLluc), which was also observed in the quantitative profile of the main analyzed compounds (aromadendrin-4′-methyl ether, artepillin C, and baccharin).

This effect started to become more prominent during the fall and, among all the studied extracts, the one obtained in May displayed the highest inhibitory effect on CL production (3.4 ± 1.1 μg/mL for CLlum and 6.2 ± 2.0 μg/mL for CLluc). The HPLC qualitative profiles of the extracts of propolis samples were quite similar, but there was a huge variation in terms of quantitative profile.

It seems that aromadendrin-4′-methyl ether and baccharin play an essential role in the antioxidant activity, while artepillin C is not very important for this effect. The extracts presenting the highest antioxidant activity were produced in May, June, and August, and they did not display cytotoxicity at 25 μg/mL; quercetin, used as control, was not toxic to neutrophils at 8.5 μg/mL.

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