Reduced extracellular phagocyte oxidative activity, antioxidant level changes and increased oxidative damage in healthy human blood as a function of age


Springer Netherlands


Age-related changes in the blood antioxidant status, in the prooxidative activity of peripheral phagocytes and in the markers of oxidative injury were simultaneously examined in the circulation of 45 middle-aged and elderly healthy volunteers. The results showed a decrease in the opsonin-dependent and -independent extracellular-phagocyte oxidative activity, evaluated by means of luminol chemiluminescence. An increase in the portion of the mitochondrial superoxide generation within the total oxidative phagocyte response was evaluated by means of lucigenin chemiluminescence. The erythrocyte copper/zinc superoxide dismutase increased with age, while blood catalase and glutathione peroxidase activities remained unchanged. The levels of blood SH-groups decreased with age. An age-related increase in blood concentration of thiobarbituric acid-reactive material, a marker of oxidative damage, was detected. Some data, illustrating the existence of a delicate balance between oxidants and prooxidants, were also obtained. Further studies on the interrelationship between the components determining pro/antioxidative status in an organism may prove useful for developing a complex strategy in combating ageing.

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