Lead induced oxidative stress: beneficial effects of Kombucha tea

Biomed Environ Sci. 2003 Sep;16(3):276-82.


Objective: To evaluate the effect of oral administration of Kombucha tea (K-tea) on lead induced oxidative stress.

Methods: Sprague Dawley rats were administered 1 mL of 3.8% lead acetate solution daily alone or in combination with K-tea orally for 45 d, and the antioxidant status and lipid peroxidation were evaluated.

Results: Oral administration of lead acetate to rats enhanced lipid peroxidation and release of creatine phosphokinase and decreased levels of reduced glutathione (GSH) and antioxidant enzymes (superoxide dismutase, SOD and glutathione peroxidase, GPx). Lead treatment did not alter humoral immunity, but inhibited DTH response when compared to the control. Lead administration also increased DNA fragmentation in liver. Oral administration of Kombucha tea to rats exposed to lead decreased lipid peroxidation and DNA damage with a concomitant increase in the reduced glutathione level and GPx activity. Kombucha tea supplementation relieved the lead induced immunosuppression to appreciable levels.

Conclusion: The results suggest that K-tea has potent antioxidant and immunomodulating properties.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Agaricales
  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / analysis
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Lead / toxicity*
  • Lipid Peroxidation
  • Male
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Tea / chemistry*


  • Antioxidants
  • Tea
  • Lead