Studies on the antimutagenic activities of garlic extract

Environ Mol Mutagen. 1989;13(4):357-65. doi: 10.1002/em.2850130413.


Experiments with Salmonella tester strains indicated that aqueous garlic extract possesses antimutagenic properties toward ionizing radiation, peroxides, adriamycin, and N-methyl-N'-nitro-nitrosoguanidine. The assumption that radical scavenging garlic constituents, i.e., molecules with sulfur moieties, might be responsible for the inhibitory effect of aqueous extract toward mutagenesis induced by radiation and radiomimetic compounds was confirmed by the results of subsequent experiments; 1) garlic extract attenuated the lethal effects of gamma-rays on repair-deficient E. coli strains; 2) the garlic constituent allicin (thio-2-propene-1-sulfinic acid S-allyl ester) is partly responsible for the reduced radiation-induced mutagenesis in Salmonella typhimurium TA 102. No such inhibitory effects were detected with alliin (S-allyl-L-cysteine sulfoxide) or cysteine; 3) aqueous garlic extract inhibited hydrogen-peroxide-induced lipid peroxidation. Results obtained in preliminary experiments with Chinese hamster ovary cells suggest that the antimutagenic properties of garlic extract are not restricted to procaryotic cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cricetinae
  • Cricetulus
  • Cysteine / analogs & derivatives
  • Cysteine / pharmacology
  • DNA Repair
  • Garlic*
  • Lipid Peroxidation
  • Mutagens*
  • Plants, Medicinal*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics


  • Mutagens
  • alliin
  • Cysteine