Effects of Amaranthus cruentus L. on aflatoxin B1- and oxidative stress-induced DNA damage in human liver (HepG2) cells
Amaranth is presently an underutilized crop despite its high content of micronutrients/bioactive phytochemicals and its capacity to thrive in harsh environmental condition. The present study aimed at determining the health benefits of Amaranthus cruentus L. in terms of protection against DNA damage induced by the mycotoxin aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) and oxidative stress using comet assay. The antioxidant potential was further investigated using electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR) and an ARE/Nrf2 reporter gene assay in vitro in a human liver model using the HepG2 cell line. Ethanolic extracts from fresh leaves grown under controlled conditions were used and additionally analyzed for their phytochemical content using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS). The extracts inhibited both AFB1- and oxidative stress-induced DNA damage in a concentration dependent way with a maximum effect of 57% and 81%, respectively. Oxidative stress triggered using ferrous sulfate was blocked by up to 38% (EPR); the potential to induce antioxidant enzymes using ARE/Nrf2-mediated gene expression was also confirmed. Based on these in vitro findings, further studies on the health-protecting effects of A. cruentus are encouraged to fully explore its health promoting potential and provide the scientific basis for encouraging its cultivation and consumption.
Odongo, G.; Schlotz, N.; Baldermann, S.; Neugart, S.; Ngwene, B.; Schreiner, M.; Lamy, E. 2018. Effects of Amaranthus cruentus L. on aflatoxin B1- and oxidative stress-induced DNA damage in human liver (HepG2) cells. Food Bioscience 26, 42-48.