Considerable controversy exists in the literature regarding the toxicity of coffee, including its possible carcinogenic and anticarcinogenic properties. This study reports on the reaction of 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine (caffeine) with the hydroxyl radical (·OH), as investigated by electron spin resonance (ESR) spin trapping. The ·OH was generated by the Fenton reaction (Fe2+ + H2O2) as well as by the reaction of chromium(V) with H2O2. The results show that caffeine effectively scavenges ·OH with a reaction rate constant of ∼ 5.9 × 109 m-1 sec-1 that is comparable with those of other efficient ·OH radical scavengers. ESR measurements provide evidence that a caffeine-derived oxygen-centred radical is formed in the reaction of caffeine with ·OH and suggest a biochemical basis for the understanding of the reported anticarcinogenic properties of caffeine and related methylxanthine compounds.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Food and Chemical Toxicology|
|State||Published - 1991|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Food Science