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Free Radicals and Antioxidants: How to Reestablish Redox Homeostasis in Chronic Diseases?

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This review examines the biological role of oxidants and antioxidants continuously produced by all living cells. Physiologically, human beings, who have inherited good genes, used to eat moderately a healthy diet and exercised daily, both systems are equally important and essential in maintaining a normal long life. However, the aging process slowly leads to a disequilibrium that is accentuated in pathologies such as diabetes, cardiovascular, degenerative, pulmonary, infective diseases, and cancer. All of these diseases shorten the life span in about 80% of individuals and represent a huge social-economic problem for health authorities. Several factors such as excessive feeding, smoking, alcoholism, and a poor life-style conjure up to their realization. Their progress, initially promoted by some pathogens and a wrong life-style, is deeply accentuated by an excessive and deranged production of deadly oxidants no longer tameable by an inhibited control of the antioxidant defences. Effective orthodox drugs are able to slow down these ailments but they impoverish the quality of life because they cannot reactivate the innate ability to restore the complexity of the antioxidant system. Several potential approaches to renew this system have been discussed and their possible roles to reactivate a valid protection in at least some of the outlined pathologies. It is hoped to evaluate this integrated medical approach because it represents a sheet anchor for many patients.

Keywords: Antioxidants; caloric restriction; chronic oxidative stress; exercise stress; ozonetherapy; reactive oxygen species; redox regulation

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2013

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.

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