Supplementation of Jurkat T cells with green tea extract decreases oxidative damage due to iron treatment

Daniela Erba, Patrizia Riso, Anna Colombo, Giulio Testolin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Regular tea consumption has been associated with a reduced risk of cancer. As demonstrated in vitro, green tea contains catechins with antioxidant properties. We evaluated the effect of the supplementation of the Jurkat T-cell line with green tea extract on oxidative damage. Cells grown in medium with or without green tea extract (10 mg/L) were treated with Fe 2+ (100 μmol/L) as an oxidative stimulus for 2 h. Cell membrane lipid peroxidation was evaluated by fatty acids pattern analysis and malondialdehyde production in α-linolenic acid-loaded cells. Furthermore, oxidative DNA damage (single strand breaks) was detected in cells by the Comet assay and quantified as relative tail moment (RTM). Supplementation with green tea extract significantly decreased malondialdehyde production (1.6 ± 0.3 vs. 0.6 ± 0.1 nmol/mg protein, P <0.05) and DNA damage (0.32 ± 0.07 vs. 0.12 ± 0.04 RTM, P <0.05) after Fe 2+ oxidative treatment. In control cells, there was no effect on membrane distribution of (n-3) fatty acids due to Fe 2+ treatment. Cell enrichment with α-linolenic acid increased total membrane (n-3) fatty acids. However, the oxidative treatment did not modify the distribution of polyunsaturated fatty acids. It is likely that the observed protective effects can be attributed to epigallocatechin gallate, which is present mainly (670 g/kg) in green tea extract; however, we cannot exclude contributions by other catechins. These data support a protective effect of green tea against oxidative damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2130-2134
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • Catechins
  • DNA damage
  • Jurkat T cells
  • Lipid peroxidation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science


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