Protective effect of red beetroot against carbon tetrachloride- and N-nitrosodiethylamine-induced oxidative stress in rats

J Agric Food Chem. 2009 Mar 25;57(6):2570-5. doi: 10.1021/jf803315d.


The aim of the study was to investigate the potential protective effect of beetroot juice in a model of oxidative stress induced by N-nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) and carbon tetrachloride (CCl(4)). Male Wistar rats were treated with beetroot juice per os, 8 mL/kg/day for 28 days, and a single i.p. dose of the xenobiotics: 150 mg/kg NDEA or 2 mL/kg CCl(4). Simultaneously, two groups of rats not pretreated with juice were given only each of the xenobiotics. The level of microsomal lipid peroxidation in the liver, expressed as TBARS concentration, was increased several fold in rats administered only NDEA or CCl(4). TBARS were decreased by 38% only in rats pretreated with beetroot juice before the administration of CCl(4). In animals pretreated with juice and receiving NDEA, a further increase in TBARS occurred. All of the investigated antioxidant enzymes were inhibited by the administration of either toxicant alone by 26%-77% as compared to controls. Pretreatment with juice caused a partial recovery in the activity of glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase, by 35% and 66%, respectively. Superoxide dismutase activity was increased about 3-fold in animals pretreated with juice. Both xenobiotics caused a rise in plasma protein carbonyls, which were reduced by 30% in rats pretreated with juice and then injected with NDEA. Similarly, DNA damage in blood leukocytes caused by either toxicant was slightly diminished, by 20%, in the rats treated with juice before NDEA administration. It could be concluded that pretreatment with beetroot juice can counteract, to some extent, xenobiotic-induced oxidative stress in rats.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Beta vulgaris* / chemistry
  • Beverages*
  • Carbon Tetrachloride / administration & dosage
  • DNA Damage / drug effects
  • Diet
  • Diethylnitrosamine / administration & dosage
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects
  • Liver / chemistry
  • Male
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Plant Roots* / chemistry
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances / analysis
  • Xenobiotics / administration & dosage


  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances
  • Xenobiotics
  • Diethylnitrosamine
  • Carbon Tetrachloride