Ilex paraguariensis extracts and its polyphenols prevent oxidative damage and senescence of human retinal pigment epithelium cells
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Abstract Aged-related macular degeneration (AMD), a prevalent chronic disease leading to blindness, is associated with oxidative damage of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Ilex paraguariensis (yerba mate, YM), widely consumed in South America, is an excellent source of antioxidants and could prevent RPE cell impairment. Therefore, we evaluated the effects of YM extracts or caffeic (CAF) and chlorogenic (CHL) acids, two major Ilex polyphenols on cell death or premature senescence in a cell line derived from human RPE (ARPE-19). Cultures were incubated with YM, CAF, CHL or appropriate controls and then exposed to H2O2. Protection was correlated with decreases of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and DNA breaks, phosphorylation of the cAMP response element (CREB) and increases of the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (NRF2), BCL2, superoxide dismutase (SOD2) and sirtuin 1 (SIRT1). These results support the protective role of YM and its polyphenols against oxidative stress induced RPE injury.