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Antioxidant effects of carotenoids

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Author: Bast, A. · Haenen, G.R.M.M. · Berg, R. van den · Berg, H. van den
Institution: Centraal Instituut voor Voedingsonderzoek TNO
Source:International Journal for Vitamin and Nutrition Research, 6, 68, 399-403
Identifier: 234857
Keywords: Nutrition · β-Carotene · Antioxidant · Carotenoids · Free radical · Lipid peroxidation · Lutein · Antioxidant · Carotenoid · Free radical · Oxygen · Conference paper · Diet supplementation · Drug interaction · Electron transport · Human · Metabolism · Antioxidants · Carotenoids · Dietary Supplements · Drug Interactions · Electron Transport · Free Radicals · Humans · Oxygen


Surprisingly, neither the precise pharmacological effect nor the toxicological profile is usually established for food components. Carotenoids are no exception in this regard. Only limited insight into the pharmacology and toxicology of carotenoids exists. It is known that the antioxidant action of carotenoids is determined by 1. electron transfer reactions and the stability of the antioxidant free radical, 2. the interplay with other antioxidants and 3. the reaction with active oxygen. Numerous metabolites of carotenoids are formed upon their action as an antioxidant. Most of these metabolites have an unknown biological activity. It is concluded that a severe lack of knowledge hampers adequate suggestions for human supplementation.