The antioxidant role of human milk

There are many factors that can cause oxidative stress resulting in cellular damage in the neonate. A sensitive marker for oxidative cellular damage is the non-invasive measurement of 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine in the urine. The total antioxidant capacity of breast milk related to enzymatic (superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, catalase) and non-enzymatic antioxidative systems (micronutrients, vitamins, hormones, immunological factors, growth factor, beta endorphins and numerous bioactive substance) and also antioxidative interaction. Antioxidants from mother’s milk have a direct effect during the breast-feeding period,, and have a long term influence regarding modulation of future immunological response in the newborn through stimulatory, anti-inflammatory and maturational signals. In future, investigation will be focused on the mechanisms of antioxidant mucosal activities, intestinal absorption, stimulation of endogens antioxidative protection, plasma activities and the whole kinetics in the organism.
Category: Review
Volume: Vol. 50, No 4, october - december 2006
Authors: Z. Zakanj, Z. Jurčić, J. Grgurić
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