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Mandarin Juice Improves the Antioxidant Status of Hypercholesterolemic Children

Codoñer-Franch, Pilar*; López-Jaén, Ana B*; Muñiz, Pilar; Sentandreu, Enrique; Bellés, Victoria Valls*

Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition: September 2008 - Volume 47 - Issue 3 - p 349–355
doi: 10.1097/MPG.0b013e31816a8cdb
Original Articles: Hepatology and Nutrition

Background: Oxidative stress has been linked to such degenerative diseases as atherosclerosis, and it has been suggested that increased dietary intake of antioxidants may reduce its progression.

Objective: To determine the effect of mandarin juice consumption on biomarkers related to oxidative stress in hypercholesterolemic children.

Materials and Methods: The diet of 48 children with plasma cholesterol >200 mg/dL and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol >130 mg/dL was supplemented for 28 days with 500 mL/day of pure (100%) mandarin juice (Citrus clementina Hort. ex Tan.). The composition of the mandarin juice was analyzed, and its antioxidant antiradical activity was evaluated in vitro. Malondialdehyde, carbonyl groups, vitamins E and C, erythrocyte-reduced glutathione, and plasma lipids were measured at the onset and at the end of the supplementation period. The paired Student t test was used to compare values before and after supplementation.

Results: Mandarin juice exerted a strong antioxidant effect mainly due to its high hydroxyl activity and, to a lesser extent, to its superoxide scavenger activity. At the end of the study, levels of the plasma biomarkers of oxidative stress were significantly decreased (malondialdehyde −7.4%, carbonyl groups −29.1%, P < 0.01), whereas the plasma antioxidants vitamin E and C (13.5%, P < 0.001 and 68.2%, P < 0.00001, respectively) and intraerythrocyte glutathione level (36.7%, P < 0.00001) were significantly increased. Plasma lipids and antibodies to oxidized low-density lipoproteins remained unchanged.

Conclusions: Regular ingestion of mandarin juice significantly reduces plasma biomarkers of lipid and protein oxidation and enhances the antioxidant status of consumers.

*Department of Pediatrics, Obstetrics, and Gynecology, University of Valencia, Spain

Unit of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Department of Biotechnology and Nutritional Science, Science Faculty, University of Burgos, Spain

Institute of Agrochemical and Food Technology, Valencia, Spain

Received 25 August, 2007

Accepted 24 January, 2008

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Pilar Codoñer-Franch, MD, PhD, Departamento POG, Facultad de Medicina y Odontología, Avenida Blasco Ibáñez, 15, 46010 Valencia, Spain (e-mail:

Research supported by the Conselleria Agricultura, Pesca, y Alimentación (Agroalimed Program), Generalitat Valenciana, Spain.

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.