Mechanistic investigations on the antioxidant action of a neuroprotective estrogen derivative

Katalin Prokai-Tatrai, Pal Perjesi, Nilka M. Rivera-Portalatin, James W. Simpkins, Laszlo Prokai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Antioxidant action is an important component of the complex neuroprotective effect of estrogens. Combining theoretical prediction and subsequent experimental confirmation by chemical and in vitro paradigms, this study focused on the mechanistic aspects of hydroxyl radical scavenging by 17β-butoxy-1,3,5(10)-estratrien-3-ol, a synthetic derivative of 17β-estradiol with increased potency to inhibit lipid peroxidation and reduced affinity to estrogen-receptors compared to the endogenous hormone. In the process that acts as a "chemical shield," the phenolic A-ring turns into 10β-hydroxy-17β-butoxy-1,3,5(10)-estratrien-3-one, a non-aromatic para-quinol, upon capturing hydroxyl radicals, which results in the complete loss of estrogen-receptor affinity and antioxidant activity. However, the parent compound is apparently recovered in brain tissue from this para-quinol via enzyme-catalyzed NAD(P)H-dependent reductive aromatization without causing oxidative stress. Taken together, our report argues for a previously unrecognized antioxidant cycle for estrogen-derived compounds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-288
Number of pages9
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2008


  • 17β-Butoxy-1,3,5(10)-estratrien-3-ol
  • Antioxidant neuroprotection
  • Chemical shield
  • Hydroxyl radical
  • Oxidative stress
  • Steroidal para-quinol


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