Resveratrol (3,4′,5-trihydroxy stilbene), a plant derived polyphenol found in mulberries, grapes and red wine is considered to possess chemopreventive properties against cancer. It is recognized as a naturally occurring antioxidant but also catalyzes oxidative DNA degradation in vitro in the presence of transition metal ions such as copper. Using a cellular system of lymphocytes isolated from human peripheral blood and Comet assay, we have confirmed that resveratrol-Cu(II) system is indeed capable of causing DNA degradation in cells such as lymphocytes. Also, trans-stilbene, which does not have any hydroxyl groups, is inactive in the lymphocyte system. Pre-incubation of lymphocytes with resveratrol indicates that it is capable of either traversing the cell membrane or binding to it. Our results are in partial support of our hypothesis that anticancer properties of various plant derived polyphenols may involve mobilization of endogenous copper and the consequent prooxidant action. © 2005 Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of the Federation of European Biochemical Societies.
Azmi, A. S., Bhat, S. H., & Hadi, S. M. (2005). Resveratrol-Cu(II) induced DNA breakage in human peripheral lymphocytes: Implications for anticancer properties. FEBS Letters, 579(14), 3131–3135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.febslet.2005.04.077