Extracts of Ginkgo biloba and Panax ginseng protect brain proteins from free radical induced oxidative damage in vitro

Acta Neurochir Suppl. 2000:76:87-90. doi: 10.1007/978-3-7091-6346-7_18.


Oxidative damage to normal human brain tissue was induced following exposure to hydroxyl (OH.) or superoxide (O2-.) free radical species generated by CO60 irradiation in vitro. Both enzymic and cytoskeletal proteins showed substantial (dose dependent) oxidative damage following exposure to OH. or O2-., as quantified by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoretic analysis. Extracts of Ginkgo biloba or Panax ginseng showed a remarkable capacity to protect brain tissue proteins from oxidative damage in vitro, even at extreme (2000 kRads) dosage levels of OH. or O2-.. We suggest, therefore, that the beneficial effect of these plant extracts in preventing brain tissue damage in vivo (e.g. following ischemia-reperfusion) may result from their action in protecting brain proteins from oxidative damage, in addition to their previously reported capacity to reduce free radical induced lipid peroxidation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain Damage, Chronic / pathology
  • Brain Edema / pathology*
  • Brain Ischemia / pathology*
  • Cerebral Cortex / blood supply
  • Cerebral Cortex / drug effects*
  • Cerebral Cortex / pathology
  • Culture Techniques
  • Ginkgo biloba*
  • Humans
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects*
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / metabolism*
  • Panax*
  • Plants, Medicinal*
  • Reperfusion Injury / pathology*
  • Tissue Extracts / pharmacology*


  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Tissue Extracts