Oxidative stress is an important component of various diseases. It manifests as an imbalance caused by an excessive production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) which are associated with a deficit of antioxidant activity. This deficit can be the consequence of genetic factors, environmental ones, metabolic imbalance, toxicity or direct attacks by the accumulation of free radicals. These can induce metabolic dysfunction affecting biological macromolecules in their structures or activities. From a physiological perspective, the neutralization of free radicals is ensured by enzymatic, antioxidant and non-enzymatic defense systems. In the present chapter, we will focus on the endogenous enzymatic antioxidant defense system such as superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPxs), thioredoxin (Trx) and paraxonase which play an important role in homeostatic redox balance. Also, we will review this set of antioxidants enzymes within different pathological states such as diabetes, cancer, autoimmune diseases, cardiovascular, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or parasitic diseases such as Leishmaniasis and Malaria.
Part of the book: Antioxidants