Natural Antioxidants in the Pharmacological Treatment of Rheumatic Immune and Inflammatory Diseases

  • Rosaria Meli
  • Giuseppina Mattace Raso
Part of the Oxidative Stress in Applied Basic Research and Clinical Practice book series (OXISTRESS)


Natural antioxidants, both supplements and diets, have long be advocated for the treatment of a wide range of serious diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and other inflammatory and immune diseases. Anyway, their therapeutic role has been questioned on the bases of their inefficacy or even for their detrimental effects [1]. Moreover, it is unrealistic to expect that natural antioxidants by themselves could solve the basic disease problem, since reactive oxygen species represent only one subset of a vast panorama of mediators involved in the pathogenesis of inflammatory and rheumatic disorders. On the other hand, for the majority of the natural antioxidants, a long-term “curative” effect has been not proven and controlled clinical studies on these compounds are still lacking. This overview suggests that several encouraging evidence exists for some of the natural antioxidants reported as treatment of common rheumatic conditions, but it also highlights the relative paucity and/or incompleteness of these studies. Anyway, it is conceivable to argue that the association of standard therapies and natural products with antioxidant activity could better control inflammation in rheumatic pathologies and could constitute a valuable support for the patients.


Rheumatoid Arthritis Rheumatoid Arthritis Patient Synovial Fibroblast Sesquiterpene Lactone Adjuvant Arthritis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



A disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs


Activator protein 1


Collagen-induced arthritis


Coenzyme Q10




Epigallocatechin 3-gallate


Epithelial neutrophil-activating peptide 78


Growth-regulated oncogene


Inducible nitric oxide synthase


c-Jun-N-terminal kinase


Myeloid cell leukemia-1


Monocyte chemotactic protein-1






Nuclear factor of activated T-cells


Nuclear factor-κB


Nitric oxide


Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs




Prostaglandin E2


Rheumatoid arthritis


Receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand


Regulated upon activation, normal T-cell expressed, and secreted


Reactive oxygen species


Superoxide dismutase


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Experimental PharmacologyUniversity of Naples Federico IINaplesItaly

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