Osteogenic Disorder Shionogi (ODS) rats can not synthesize ascorbic acid (AA). We have examined the capacity of green tea flavonoids (GTF) to modify low-density lipoprotein (LDL) oxidation in ODS rats with dietary AA restriction. In the first experiment, ODS rats were fed diets containing 300 (AA300 diet) or 0 (AA0 diet) mg AA/kg diets for 20 d. In comparison with the AA300 diet, the AA0 diet significantly decreased the concentrations of plasma AA and α-tocopherol in LDL and significantly shortened the lag time of LDL oxidation in vitro. In the second experiment, ODS rats were fed one of the following three diets: the AA300 diet, the diet containing 25 mg AA (AA25, marginal AA)/kg diet (AA25 diet), or the diet containing 25 mg AA + 8 g GTF/kg diet (AA25 + GTF diet) for 20 d. Plasma AA concentration were significantly lower in rats fed AA25 compared with AA300 but not in those fed AA25 + GTF. LDL oxidation lag time was significantly longer in rats fed AA25 + GTF compared with the other two groups. Lag time for LDL oxidation was significantly and positively correlated with LDL α-tocopherol (r = 0.6885, P = 0.0191). These results suggest that dietary flavonoids suppress the LDL oxidation through the sparing effect on LDL α-tocopherol and/or plasma AA when AA intake is marginal in the ODS rats.
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