Role of Sulforaphane in Protection of Gastrointestinal Tract Against H. pylori and NSAID-Induced Oxidative Stress

Curr Pharm Des. 2017;23(27):4066-4075. doi: 10.2174/1381612823666170207103943.


Background: Sulforaphane (SFN), a phytochemical found in abundance in broccoli sprouts, potently induces a variety of antioxidant enzymes, and thereby protects cells from injury induced by various kinds of oxidative stresses. It has been suggested that both H. pylori infection and intake of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) induce chronic oxidative stress in gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa, thereby causing mucosal injury in the GI tract. Therefore, it would be a reasonable assumption that SFN protects GI mucosa against oxidative injury induced by H. pylori or NSAIDs.

Methods: We examined the effects of SFN on H. pylori viability in vitro, levels of gastritis in H.pylori-infected mice in vivo, and in H.pylori-infected human subjects. We also examined the effects of SFN on NSAID-induced small intestinal injury in mice.

Results: Our data from the H. pylori infection study clearly demonstrated that SFN inhibited H. pylori viability both in vitro and in vivo, and mitigated H. pylori-induced gastritis in mice and humans. Similarly, our study on NSAID-induced small intestinal injury showed that SFN not only mitigated aspirin-induced injury of small intestinal epithelial cells in vitro, but also ameliorated indomethacin-induced small intestinal injury in mice in vivo.

Conclusions: These data strongly suggest that SFN contributes to the protection of GI mucosa against oxidative injury induced by H. pylori or NSAIDs.

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori; Sulforaphane; aspirin; indomethacin; small intestine; stomach.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects
  • Aspirin / administration & dosage
  • Aspirin / adverse effects
  • Gastric Mucosa / drug effects*
  • Gastric Mucosa / microbiology
  • Gastric Mucosa / pathology
  • Gastritis / microbiology
  • Gastritis / prevention & control
  • Gastrointestinal Tract / drug effects
  • Gastrointestinal Tract / pathology
  • Helicobacter Infections / complications
  • Helicobacter Infections / drug therapy
  • Helicobacter pylori / drug effects
  • Helicobacter pylori / isolation & purification
  • Humans
  • Indomethacin / administration & dosage
  • Indomethacin / adverse effects
  • Intestinal Mucosa / drug effects
  • Intestinal Mucosa / microbiology
  • Intestinal Mucosa / pathology
  • Isothiocyanates / pharmacology*
  • Mice
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Sulfoxides


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Isothiocyanates
  • Sulfoxides
  • sulforaphane
  • Aspirin
  • Indomethacin