The etiology of fibromyalgia is not clearly understood. In recent years, a few studies have investigated the possible role of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the etiology and pathogenesis of fibromyalgia. [Note: when not kept in check, ROS, also called free radicals, cause an “oxidation” chain reaction – stealing electrons from molecules in the cells, degrading them like rust on a tin can. Antioxidants such as A, C, E, and beta-carotene neutralize the action of ROS.]
The aim of this study was to investigate plasma antioxidant vitamins, lipid peroxidation [fatty acid degradation] (LP), and nitric oxide (NO) levels in patients with fibromyalgia and controls.
The study was performed on the blood plasma of 30 female patients and 30 age-matched controls. After a fast of 12 hours, blood samples were taken, and plasma samples were obtained for measurement of vitamins A, C, E, and beta-carotene concentrations and levels of LP and NO. [Note: A, E, and beta carotene are fat soluble, meaning they blend with lipids/fats in the body and can be stored. C is water soluble; and though C can penetrate the aqueous portions of cells, unused C can’t be stored and is excreted.]
• Concentrations of vitamins A (p < 0.01) and E (p < 0.001) were significantly lower in patients with fibromyalgia than in controls,
• And LP levels were significantly (p < 0.05) higher in the plasma of the patients than in controls.
• Concentrations of vitamin C and beta-carotene and levels of NO did not change significantly.
These results provide some evidence for a potential role of lipid peroxidation and fat-soluble antioxidants in the patients with fibromyalgia.
Source: Cell Biochemistry and Function, Mar 24, 2009.PMID: 19319826, by Akkus S, Naziroglu M, Eris S, Yalman K, Yilmaz N, Yener M. Medical Faculty, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Suleyman Demirel University, Isparta, Turkey. [E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org]