Azocompounds as generators of defined radical species: Contributions and challenges for free radical research

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Peroxyl radicals participate in multiple processes involved in critical changes to cells, tissues, pharmacueticals and foods. Some of these reactions explain their association with degenerative pathologies, including cardiovascular and neurological diseases, as well as cancer development. Azocompounds, and particularly AAPH (2,2′-Azobis(2-methylpropionamidine) dihydrochloride), a cationic water-soluble derivative, have been employed extensively as sources of model peroxyl radicals. A considerable number of studies have reported mechanistic data on the oxidation of biologically-relevant targets, the scavenging activity of foods and natural products, and the reactions with, and responses of, cultured cells. However, despite the (supposed) experimental simplicity of using azocompounds, the chemistry of peroxyl radical production and subsequent reactions is complicated, and not always considered in sufficient depth when analyzing experimental data. The present work discusses the chemical aspects of azocompounds as generators of peroxyl (and other) radicals, together with their contribution to our understanding of biochemistry, pharmaceutical and food chemistry research. The evidence supporting a role for the formation of alkoxyl (RO•) and other radicals during thermal and photochemical decomposition of azocompounds is assessed, together with the potential influence of such species on the reactions under study.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFree Radical Biology and Medicine
Volume160
Pages (from-to)78-91
ISSN0891-5849
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

    Research areas

  • AAPH, Alkoxyl radicals, Azocompounds, Cell cultures, Erythrocytes, Foods, Natural products, Peroxyl radicals, Protein oxidation, Scavenging activity

ID: 251307748