Oxidative Stress in Brassica rapa and Humans

DeVore, Stanley
Environmental stresses activate a cascade of metabolic responses in every living organism. One crucial consequence of stress occurrence is an increased production of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS). ROS, such as the superoxide radical (O2-) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), are highly reactive derived from molecular oxygen (O¬2). High concentrations of ROS cause intracellular oxidative stress and may result in severe damage to cellular macromolecules, such as the lipidic components of cellular membranes and the nucleotides of DNA. Given their destructive tendencies, for a century scientists have believed that the production of ROS across living species signified only negative consequences; however, in recent decades a mounting body of evidence has demonstrated that ROS possess many important metabolic and signaling roles across species. In this presentation, the potential beneficial roles of ROS will be discussed, including preliminary data of ROS accumulation in the plant species Brassica rapa under stress conditions. In addition, the results obtained on plants will be compared and contrasted with some of the more or less established roles of ROS within human physiological systems.
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