Electron spin resonance (ESR) was used to investigate the reaction of aspirin toward reactive oxygen species, such as hydroxyl radicals (.OH), superoxide radicals (O2-) and H2O2. The Fenton reaction (Fe(II) + H2O2→FE(III) + .OH + OR) was used as a source of .OH radicals. The results show that aspirin is an efficient .OH radical scavenger with a reaction rate constant of k = 3.6 x 1010 M-1 sec-1, which is faster than several well established antioxidants, such as ascorbate, glutathione and cysteine. However, aspirin is not a good scavenger for O2- or H2O2. Through its antioxidant property, aspirin exhibited a protective effect against silica-induced lipid peroxidation and DNA strand breakage. Aspirin also inhibited the activation of nuclear transcription factor-κβ induced by silica, lipopolysaccharide or the transition metal, Fe(II), as demonstrated by electrophoretic mobility shift assay. The results show that aspirin functions as an antioxidant via its ability to scavenge .OH radicals. This antioxidant property may explain some of its various physiological and pharmacological actions.
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- Antioxidant properties
- DNA damage
- Lipid peroxidation