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Antioxidants and Osteoarthritis

Abstract

Oxidative stress produces reactive oxygen species (ROS) that play key roles in the development of osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Metabolic reactions in chondrocytes and synoviocytes produce free radicals, ROS, and their derivatives. These dangerous chemicals can accumulate in the synovial joint, causing extensive structural damage, inflammation, and cell death. Antioxidants are naturally occurring reducing agents capable of inhibiting ROS formation, scavenging free radicals, and removing ROS derivatives. Antioxidant vitamins have major roles in modulating oxidative stress, regulating immune responses, and contributing to cell differentiation. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid), vitamin E, thiols (glutathione), and plant polyphenols have the capacity to neutralize ROS in joints and decrease the oxidative stress associated with the progression of arthritis. There is a pressing need to understand the contribution of antioxidants to OA, because they may provide important insight into ameliorating the initiation and progression of the disease. The objective of this chapter is to examine ROS biology at the cellular and tissue levels in the synovial joint with special emphasis on the biological effects of ROS and naturally occurring antioxidants on chondrocytes. We summarize and critically appraise the information published about antioxidants and their potential for preventing and treating arthritic diseases such as OA. The expectation is to relate the potential importance of dietary antioxidants and their supplementation in OA patients. This knowledge will improve the design of future clinical trials and interventional studies on OA and related diseases.

Keywords

  • Antioxidant
  • Cartilage
  • Combination products
  • Glutathione
  • Inflammation
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Supplements
  • Synovium
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E

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Acknowledgments

A. Mobasheri wishes to acknowledge the generous financial support of the Wellcome Trust, the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) (grant number: Mobasheri.A.28102007), the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) (grants BBSRC/S/M/2006/13141 and BB/G018030/1), and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

Conflict of Interest Statement

This chapter was written by the authors within the scope of their academic and research positions at their host institutions. None of the authors has a financial or personal relationship with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence or bias the content of this chapter.

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Mobasheri, A., Biesalski, H.K., Shakibaei, M., Henrotin, Y. (2014). Antioxidants and Osteoarthritis. In: Laher, I. (eds) Systems Biology of Free Radicals and Antioxidants. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-30018-9_130

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