Methods for evaluating the potency and efficacy of antioxidants

Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2010 Sep;13(5):518-25. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0b013e32833aff12.


Purpose of review: The aim of this article is to present a brief panorama of the most widely used methods and of new analytical approaches for evaluating antioxidant capacity and to discuss them in terms of advantages and drawbacks.

Recent findings: To date, many in-vitro tests are available from the chemical assay performed in a homogenous solution such as oxygen radical antioxidant capacity assay to more complex cell-based methods using exogenic probes to detect oxidation. In complement to these existing methods, novel approaches have recently been developed such as the conjugated autoxidizable triene assay implemented in emulsions and using tung oil as ultraviolet probe.

Summary: The complexity and diverse range of research topics investigated have led to the development of a multitude of tests, but unfortunately none of them are universal. Thus, one of the major challenges is to know which method is best suited for a particular application.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / physiology*
  • Biological Assay / methods
  • Chemistry Techniques, Analytical / methods*
  • Humans
  • Oxidation-Reduction


  • Antioxidants