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N-Acetyl Cysteine Restores the Diminished Activity of the Antioxidant Enzymatic System Caused by SARS-CoV-2 Infection: Preliminary Findings
Soto et al., Pharmaceuticals, doi:10.3390/ph16040591
Soto et al., N-Acetyl Cysteine Restores the Diminished Activity of the Antioxidant Enzymatic System Caused by SARS-CoV-2.., Pharmaceuticals, doi:10.3390/ph16040591
Apr 2023   Source   PDF  
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Prospective analysis of 16 COVID-19 patients treated with NAC and 20 healthy controls, showing that NAC may help restore diminished activity of the antioxidant enzymatic system in patients with COVID-19.
Soto et al., 14 Apr 2023, Mexico, peer-reviewed, 6 authors.
Contact: (corresponding author),
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AI generated summary. Current AI models can provide useful summaries for non-experts, but may be inaccurate and have limited ability to analyze larger context such as the entire evidence base for N-acetylcysteine.

N-acetylcysteine (NAC) can restore the diminished activity of the antioxidant enzymatic system in patients with COVID-19.

  • SARS-CoV-2 is a virus that can cause COVID-19, a respiratory illness.
  • The virus infects type II pneumocytes in the lungs, which are responsible for producing surfactant, a substance that helps to keep the lungs inflated.
  • SARS-CoV-2 infection can lead to an overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which are molecules that can damage cells.
  • N-acetylcysteine (NAC) is a substance that can help to reduce ROS levels.
  • In this study, the researchers investigated the effects of NAC on the antioxidant system in patients with COVID-19.
  • The researchers found that NAC was able to restore the diminished activity of the antioxidant enzymatic system in patients with COVID-19.
  • The researchers concluded that NAC may be a potential treatment for COVID-19.

It is important to note that this study was small and preliminary. More research is needed to confirm the findings of this study and to determine the optimal dose and duration of NAC treatment for COVID-19.

N-Acetyl Cysteine Restores the Diminished Activity of the Antioxidant Enzymatic System Caused by SARS-CoV-2 Infection: Preliminary Findings
María Elena Soto, Linaloe Manzano-Pech, Adrían Palacios-Chavarría, Rafael Ricardo Valdez-Vázquez, Verónica Guarner-Lans, Israel Pérez-Torres
Pharmaceuticals, doi:10.3390/ph16040591
SARS-CoV-2 infects type II pneumocytes and disrupts redox homeostasis by overproducing reactive oxygen species (ROS). N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) is a precursor of the synthesis of glutathione (GSH) and it restores the loss of redox homeostasis associated to viral infections. The aim of the study is to evaluate the effect of the treatment with NAC on the enzymatic antioxidant system in serum from patients infected by SARS-CoV-2. We evaluated the enzymatic activities of thioredoxin reductase (TrxR), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), -S-transferase (GST), and reductase (GR) by spectrophotometry and the concentrations of the glutathione (GSH), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), thiols, nitrites (NO 2 -), and lipid peroxidation (LPO) in serum. The activity of the extracellular super oxide dismutase (ecSOD) was determined by native polyacrylamide gels, and 3-nitrotyrosine (3-NT) was measured by ELISA. A decrease in the activities of the ecSOD, TrxR, GPx, GST GR, (p = 0 ≤ 0.1), and the GSH, TAC, thiols, and NO 2 -(p ≤ 0.001) concentrations and an increase in LPO and 3-NT (p = 0.001) concentrations were found in COVID-19 patients vs. healthy subjects. The treatment with NAC as an adjuvant therapy may contribute to a reduction in the OS associated to the infection by SARS-CoV-2 through the generation of GSH. GSH promotes the metabolic pathways that depend on it, thus contributing to an increase in TAC and to restore redox homeostasis.
Institutional Review Board Statement: The studies involving human participants were reviewed and approved by ethical approval from the local ethics committee on 19 August 2020 (Control-9867/2020, register REG. CONBIOETICA-09 CEI-011-20160627). A written informed consent for enrollment or consent to use patient data was obtained from each patient or their legal surrogate. The protocol was registered (TRIAL REGISTRATION: Identifier: NCT 04570254). Informed Consent Statement: The patients/participants provided their written informed consent to participate in this study. Written informed consent was obtained from the individual(s) for the publication of any potentially identifiable images or data included in this article. Conflicts of Interest: The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interest or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.
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