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The action of antioxidants to reduce the oxidative stress in experimental model of lung cancer: study of the pequi (Caryocar brasiliense Camb.)


The lung cancer corresponds to 28% of all deaths by cancer, and had been shown of difficult control with the conventional treatment. In Brazil, the estimation for 2011 is about 27.630 new cases. The CP is histologically classified in four celular types, where the adenocarcinoma is the most frequent. One of the factors that are involved in the carcinogenesis process is the excessive formation of free radicals that can lead to several types of celular damage. Studies show the participation of the oxidative stress in the development of cancer, suggesting that the persistence of this state in the tumoral cells could explain partially some characterists of cancer. The oxidative stress is a state of disbalance between the production of free radicals and the ability to defense of the organism against these species, that leads to a progressive oxidative damage. This stress has its damages minimized for the enzymatic antioxidant defense system, represented, mainly by the enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GP), and the non enzymatic antioxidants like vitamin A, C and E, uric acid and some plasma proteins. Besides these vitamins, the fenolic compounds and the carotenoids had shown important action against the oxidative stress, and in the course of neoplasic diseases, deserving a growing interest of scientific research. The Caryocar brasiliense Camb, most known as pequi, is a native fruit from the brazilian savanah, and its pulp is rich in unsaturated fatty acids, like oleic acid, in concentrations of aproximately 51,37% to 55,87%, and the palmitic acid in concentrations of 35,17% to 46,79%, besides high concentrations of natural antioxidants as vitamin C, fenolic compounds and carotenoids. In in the appropriate amount, the antioxidants obtained from the diet are indispensable to mantain the oxidative balance, and if the intake of isolated antioxidants increase these stress, maybe the ingestion of nutritional compounds with more than one type of antioxidant may help in the decrease of the development of celular damage, decreasing the oxidative stress and increasing the resistance of the cells for a several carcinogenic factors. (AU)