Modulation of Antioxidant Enzyme Activities by Sexual Steroid Hormones
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Taking into consideration the biological importance of interaction between antioxidant defense (AD) enzymes and sexual steroid hormones it was deemed important to compare our recent achievements in the field with the state of current knowledge. The main goal of the present review was to investigate the changes of AD enzyme activities: superoxide dismutases, catalase, glutathione peroxidase, glutathione-S-transferase and glutathione reductase in the brain of female and male rats depending on progesterone and estradiol. These ovarian steroids produce their effects by acting on numerous target tissues and organs, such as the reproductive organs, bone tissue and cartilage, peripheral blood vessels and the central nervous system (CNS). We have chosen it as a new parameter that might represent an important indicator of the changes within the CNS, bearing in mind the biological importance of the enzymes of the AD system. Our experimental results indicate that the AD enzyme activities in the brain tissue of female and male rats show a certain dependence on the concentration of progesterone and estradiol. The present review suggests that the modulation of the oxidative and antioxidative capacity by sexual steroid hormones is mediated through antioxidant metabolizing enzymes.