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REVIEW: Anti-ischemic Activity of Carnosine

S. L. Stvolinsky1* and D. Dobrota2

1Laboratory of Clinical Neurochemistry, Institute of Neurology, Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, Volokolamskoe Shosse 80, Moscow, 123367 Russia; fax: (7-095) 490-2408; E-mail: sls@bio.inevro.msk.ru

2Department of Biochemistry, Jessenius Faculty of Medicine, Komensky University of Bratislava, Martin 036 45, Slovakia; E-mail: dusan.dobrota@jfmed.uniba.sk

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received December 13, 1999
This review summarizes the data on anti-ischemic activity of carnosine. The pronounced anti-ischemic effects of carnosine in the brain and heart are due to the combination of antioxidant and membrane-protecting activity, proton buffering capacity, formation of complexes with transition metals, and regulation of macrophage function. In experimental cerebral ischemia, carnosine decreases mortality and is beneficial for neurological conditions of the animals. In cardiac ischemia, carnosine protects cardiomyocytes from damage and improves contractility of the heart. The data indicate that carnosine can be used as an anti-ischemic drug.
KEY WORDS: carnosine, brain, heart, experimental ischemia, anti-ischemic activity