DNA and Oxidative Damage
DNA is susceptible to many kinds of damage and one of these is oxidative damage. This type of damage can build up over time and overwhelm repair systems, leading to health problems and eventually, disease.
What is Oxidative DNA Damage?Oxidative damage occurs in your cells from reactive oxygen species. The reactive oxygen species are a consequence of normal body processes such as metabolism. They are also a consequence of interactions with toxic sources such as cancer-promoting substances, certain drugs and radiation. DNA oxidative damage from reactive oxygen species is a common type of damage faced by cells and it can lead to many different mutations and problems in DNA. These range from lesions on DNA and breaks in DNA strands to faulty links and base gaps in sequences.
Understanding How Oxidative DNA Damage OccursDNA oxidative damage and its effects can be extremely detrimental to the body. Our understanding of precisely how these effects occur is important to preventing the damage or looking at how to ease the rate at which oxidative reactions cause damage to the body. Another valid focus is to find ways to measure the level of damage before it overwhelms the body and leads to disease. At present, many different types of DNA lesions have been identified in the body's cells and under different conditions. This information has allowed researchers to understand just how DNA oxidative damage is implicated in a number of diseases. These diseases range from neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease to cancers and other diseases that have devastating consequences. In addition to its role in diseases, DNA oxidative damage has also been shown to play a part in the ageing process.
Diseases Associated With Oxidative DNA DamageSome of the specific diseases and conditions associated with DNA oxidative damage - some of which are highly serious and potentially fatal - include:
- Heart Disease
- Gastrointestinal disorders
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Neurological diseases