Potent Induction of Total Cellular and Mitochondrial Antioxidants and Phase 2 Enzymes by Cruciferous Sulforaphane in Rat Aortic Smooth

Potent induction of total cellular and mitochondrial antioxidants and phase 2 enzymes by cruciferous sulforaphane in rat aortic smooth muscle cells: cytoprotection against oxidative and electrophilic stress.

Cardiovasc Toxicol. 2008 Fall;8(3):115-25. Epub 2008 Jul 8.

Zhu H, Jia Z, Strobl JS, Ehrich M, Misra HP, Li Y.

Division of Biomedical Sciences, Edward Via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Blacksburg, VA 24060, USA.

Sulforaphane, a cruciferous isothiocyanate compound, upregulates cytoprotective genes in liver, but its effects on antioxidants and phase 2 defenses in vascular cells are unknown. Here we report that incubation of rat aortic smooth muscle A10 cells with sulforaphane (0.25-5 microM) resulted in concentration-dependent induction of a spectrum of important cellular antioxidants and phase 2 enzymes, including superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase, the reduced form of glutathione (GSH), glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase (GR), glutathione S-transferase (GST), and NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1). Sulforaphane also increased levels/activities of SOD, catalase, GSH and GST in isolated mitochondria of aortic smooth muscle cells. Time-dependent sulforaphane-induced increases in the mRNA levels for MnSOD, catalase, the catalytic subunit of gamma-glutamylcysteine ligase, GR, GST-A1, GST-P1, and NQO1 were observed. Pretreatment with sulforaphane (0.5, 1, and 5 microM) protected aortic smooth muscle cells from oxidative and electrophilic cytotoxicity induced by xanthine oxidase (XO)/xanthine, H2O2, SIN-1-derived peroxynitrite, 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal, and acrolein. Furthermore, sulforaphane pretreatment prevented intracellular accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) after exposure of the cells to XO/xanthine, H2O2, or SIN-1. Taken together, this study demonstrates that in the aortic smooth muscle cells sulforaphane at physiologically relevant concentrations potently induces a series of total cellular as well as mitochondrial antioxidants and phase 2 enzymes, which is accompanied by dramatically increased resistance of these vascular cells to oxidative and electrophilic stress.


Note from ISS:  Several crucifer sprouts including broccoli sprouts are currently the most potent natural source of sulforaphane known.  They often produce 10 to 100 times the amount of sulforaphane as their corresponding mature vegetables. (“Broccoli sprouts: an exceptionally rich source of inducers of enzymes that protect against chemical carcinogens.”, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 1997 Sep 16;94(19):10367-72.)