Two polysaccharides, low molecular weight hyaluronic acid-1 (LMWHA-1) and LMWHA-2, with their molecular weight of 1.45×10(5) and 4.52×10(4)Da, respectively, were prepared from high molecular weight hyaluronic acid (HA,1.05×10(6)Da). LMWHA-1, LMWHA-2 and HA were studied for their antioxidant activities. In vitro antioxidant assay, LMWHA showed strong inhibition of lipid peroxidation and scavenging activities of hydroxyl radical, moderate 1,1-diphenyl-2-picryldydrazyl radical and superoxide anion scavenging activity. In addition, the LMWHA-1 exhibited much stronger antioxidant activity than LMWHA-2 and HA. For antioxidant testing in vivo, LMWHA-1, LMWHA-2 and HA were orally administrated over a period of 7days in a cyclophosphamide(CY) induced immunosuppressed mice model. As results, administration of LMWHA was able to overcome CY-induced immunosuppression and significantly raised the activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) and total antioxidant capacity (TAOC) in immunosuppressed mice. The results showed that the LMWHA, possessing pronounced free radical scavenging and antioxidant activities.
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