Beetroot (Beta vulgaris) rescues mice fromγ-ray irradiation by accelerating hematopoiesis and curtailing immunosuppression.
Pharm Biol. 2017 Dec ;55(1):306-319. PMID: 27927068
CONTEXT: Beetroot [Beta vulgaris Linné (Chenopodiaceae)], a vegetable usually consumed as a food or a medicinal plant in Europe, has been reported to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Since the lymphohematopoietic system is the most sensitive tissue to ionizing radiation, protecting it from radiation damage is one ofthe best ways to decrease detrimental effects from radiation exposure.
OBJECTIVE: In this study, we evaluated the radio-protective effects of beetroot in hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and progenitor cells.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Beetroot extract was administered at a dose of 400 mg/mouse per os (p.o.) three times into C57BL/6 mice and, at day 10 after γ-ray irradiation, diverse molecular presentations were measured and compared against non-irradiated and irradiated mice with PBS treatments. Survival of beetroot-fed and unfed irradiated animal was also compared.
RESULTS: Beetroot not only stimulated cell proliferation, but also minimized DNA damage of splenocytes. Beetroot also repopulated S-phase cells and increased Ki-67 or c-Kit positive cells in bone marrow. Moreover, beetroot-treated mice showed notable boosting of differentiation of HSCs into burst-forming units-erythroid along with increased production of IL-3. Also, beetroot-treated mice displayed enhancement in the level of hematocrit and hemoglobin as well as the number of red blood cell in peripheral blood. Beetroot diet improved survival rate of lethally exposed mice with a dose reduction factor (DRF) of 1.1.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: These results suggest that beetroot has the potency to preserve bone marrow integrity and stimulate the differentiation of HSCs against ionizing radiation.