The measurement of single parameters of oxidative stress in biological fluids can often give results difficult to interpret as to the real involvement of oxidative processes in a given disease condition. In the present study we propose a novel integrated parameter, called “redox compensation index”, obtained by combining the results of two established and convenient procedures, i.e. the Fox-2 assay for plasma lipid hydroperoxides and the ferric reducing/antioxidant power (FRAP) assay for total antioxidant potential of plasma. These procedures were employed for the evaluation of oxidative stress in a group of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus, a condition in which oxidative processes are implicated in the development of complications. In type 2 diabetic patients, plasma lipid hydroperoxides were directly correlated with levels of glycated hemoglobin. On the other hand, a significant inverse correlation was o b s e rved between levels of glycated hemoglobin and redox compensation values. The data reported suggest that the redox compensation index could represent a convenient parameter for the direct appraisal of oxidative status in clinical subjects, and are in support of the proposed role of protein glycation in production of oxidative alterations during type 2 diabetes mellitus.
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