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Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research

On-line version ISSN 1414-431X


FACUNDO, H.T.F.; BRANDT, C.T.; OWEN, J.S.  and  LIMA, V.L.M.. Elevated levels of erythrocyte-conjugated dienes indicate increased lipid peroxidation in schistosomiasis mansoni patients. Braz J Med Biol Res [online]. 2004, vol.37, n.7, pp.957-962. ISSN 1414-431X.

Schistosoma mansoni causes liver disease by inducing granulomatous inflammation. This favors formation of reactive oxygen species, including superoxide ions, hydrogen peroxide and hydroxyl radicals all of which may induce lipid peroxidation. We have evaluated lipid peroxidation in 18 patients with hepatosplenic schistosomiasis mansoni previously treated with oxamniquine followed by splenectomy, ligature of the left gastric vein and auto-implantation of spleen tissue, by measuring levels of erythrocyte-conjugated dienes and plasma malondialdehyde (MDA). Age-matched, healthy individuals (N = 18) formed the control group. Erythrocyte-conjugated dienes were extracted with dichloromethane/methanol and quantified by UV spectrophotometry, while plasma MDA was measured by reaction with thiobarbituric acid. Patient erythrocytes contained two times more conjugated dienes than control cells (584.5 ± 67.8 vs 271.7 ± 20.1 µmol/l, P < 0.001), whereas the increase in plasma MDA concentration (about 10%) was not statistically significant. These elevated conjugated dienes in patients infected by S. mansoni suggest increased lipid peroxidation in cell membranes, although this was not evident when a common marker of oxidative stress, plasma MDA, was measured. Nevertheless, these two markers of lipid peroxidation, circulating MDA and erythrocyte-conjugated dienes, correlated significantly in both patient (r = 0.62; P < 0.01) and control (r = 0.57; P < 0.05) groups. Our data show that patients with schistosomiasis have abnormal lipid peroxidation, with elevated erythrocyte-conjugated dienes implying dysfunctional cell membranes, and also imply that this may be attenuated by the redox capacity of antioxidant agents, which prevent accumulation of plasma MDA.

Keywords : Lipid peroxidation; Conjugated dienes; Malondialdehyde; Schistosomiasis mansoni.

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