A variety of degenerative diseases are caused by free radicals. Oxidative stress, the major cause of the diseases, is due to the imbalance between the free radicals and the antioxidants. To overcome this imbalance, the body needs antioxidants whether endogenously present or supplied from exogenous sources. Hence, the search of effective natural antioxidants is greatly needed to fight the onset of degenerative diseases and aging. Indeed, vascular plants are well-known sources of good and efficient natural antioxidants. Non-tracheophytes are however relatively unexplored. Interestingly, these atracheophytes are endowed with the remarkable property of desiccation tolerance which makes them unique in the plant kingdom. The property is attributed to its specialized structure and rich reservoir of phytochemicals. Therefore, there is a need to bioprospect this rich resource for antioxidants.
Part of the book: Bryophytes