Prooxidative effects of aspartame on antioxidant defense status in erythrocytes of rats.
J Biosci. 2014 Dec ;39(5):859-66. PMID: 25431414
Marko D Prokic
Since aspartame (L-aspartyl-L-phenylalanine methyl ester, ASP) is one of the most widely used artificial sweeteners, the aim of the present study was to investigate its effects on serum glucose and lipid levels as well as its effects on oxidative/antioxidative status in erythrocytes of rats. The experiment included two groups of animals: the control group was administered with water only, while the experimental group was orally administered with ASP (40 mg/kg b.w.) daily, for a period of six weeks. When compared with the control group, the group administrated with ASP indicated higher values of serum glucose, cholesterol and triglycerides. Significantly increased concentrations of superoxide anion (O2 .-), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), peroxynitrite (?N??-) and lipid peroxides (LPO) were recorded in the erythrocytes of ASP treated group in comparison to the control group. In the course of chronic ASP administration, the following was observed: the concentration of reduced glutathione (GSH) and the activity of catalase (CAT) increased. Thus, these findings suggest that long-term consumption of ASP leads to hyperglycemia and hyperlipidemia, as well as to oxidative stress in erythrocytes.