Modulation of phase II enzymes by sulforaphane: implications for its cardioprotective potential

J Agric Food Chem. 2009 Jun 24;57(12):5615-22. doi: 10.1021/jf900549c.


Oxidative stress plays a major role in the pathophysiology of cardiac disorders, but the experimental data on the protective effects of exogenous antioxidants are controversial. A promising cardioprotective strategy may be through the induction of the endogenous antioxidants and phase II enzymes by chemical inducers. Sulforaphane is an isothiocyanate derived from cruciferous vegetables, and it has gained attention mainly as a potential chemopreventive agent in part through the induction of detoxifying enzymes. Accordingly, this study was undertaken to investigate the time-dependent induction of gene transcription, protein expression, and enzyme activity of antioxidant and phase II enzymes [glutathione reductase, glutathione-S-transferase, glutathione peroxidase, NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase-1, thioredoxin reductase] by sulforaphane in cultured rat neonatal cardiomyocytes. The potential cardioprotective action of sulforaphane was confirmed by the decrease in intracellular reactive oxygen species production, the increase in cell viability, and the decrease in DNA fragmentation after long-term treatment accompanied by the induction of antioxidants and phase II enzymes in cardiomyocytes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cardiotonic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / drug therapy
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / enzymology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / genetics
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / metabolism
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Enzyme Activation / drug effects
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic / drug effects*
  • Glutathione Peroxidase / genetics
  • Glutathione Peroxidase / metabolism
  • Glutathione Reductase / genetics
  • Glutathione Reductase / metabolism
  • Glutathione Transferase / genetics
  • Glutathione Transferase / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Isothiocyanates
  • Metabolic Detoxication, Phase II*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / drug effects
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / enzymology
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Quinone Reductases / genetics
  • Quinone Reductases / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Sulfoxides
  • Thiocyanates / pharmacology*


  • Cardiotonic Agents
  • Isothiocyanates
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Sulfoxides
  • Thiocyanates
  • Glutathione Peroxidase
  • Quinone Reductases
  • Glutathione Reductase
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • sulforaphane