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Ability of carnosine and other skeletal muscle components to quench unsaturated aldehydic lipid oxidation products

Zhou, S., Decker, E.A.
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 1999 v.47 no.1 pp. 51-55
skeletal muscle, amines, sulfhydryl groups, lipid peroxidation, aldehydes, antioxidants, carnosine
Breakdown of lipid peroxides results in the formation of aldehydic compounds which are toxic to biological systems and deleterious to food quality. To determine the potential of skeletal muscle compounds to protect biomolecules from lipid oxidation products, the ability of carnosine and various other related compounds to quench monounsaturated and polyunsaturated aldehydes was investigated. Carnosine, the most abundant dipeptide in skeletal muscle, is capable of quenching alpha-beta-monounsaturated aldehydes and 4-hydroxy-2-trans-nonenal (HNE) more effectively than its constituent amino acid. Carnosine (5 mM) reduced 44% of headspace trans-2-hexenal (0.5 mM) after 1 h incubation at 40 degrees C and pH 7.4. Other histidine-containing dipeptides and the amine compounds, spermine and spermidine, had similar or slightly lower quenching activity than carnosine. Glutathione and thioctic acid had superior quenching ability than carnosine, but their overall contribution to aldehyde quenching compared to carnosine is limited due to their lower concentration in skeletal muscle. The results suggest that carnosine could be important for decreasing the toxicity of lipid oxidation products in biological systems and for minimizing rancidity in muscle foods.