Comparative assessment of brain and circulating oxidative stress biomarkers in weaned New Zealand White rabbits supplemented with microalga Chlorella vulgaris biomass

  • A.B. Sikiru
  • A. Arangasamy
  • O.J. Makinde
  • Z.A. Sa’aci
  • E. Opoola
  • S.A. Kubrah
  • R. Bhatta
Keywords: Brain, blood-brain barrier, Chlorella vulgaris, Oxidative stress, Rabbits.


The brain is central to human and animal well-being but it requires a high amount of oxygen for its normal functioning and this makes it an organ highly vulnerable to oxidative stress damage. Therefore, for the promotion of normal physiological and cellular functions of the brain, antioxidant intake is very critical. This study investigated the antioxidant enzymatic activities in the brain by measuring activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and reduced glutathione (GSH) in connection with the circulating oxidative stress biomarkers of the serum and liver of New Zealand White rabbits supplemented with microalga Chlorella vulgaris biomass in addition to regular basal diets. The study involved a random distribution of 40 rabbits of eight weeks old into five experimental group using completely randomized design. The rabbits were observed for a period of 120 when they are being supplemented after which their blood, brain, and liver were collected for analyses. The results show that the total antioxidant capacity was higher in the brain of the supplemented rabbits (P<0.05). Although, there was no significant difference in the brain malondialdehyde concentrations, there were higher activities of antioxidant enzymes in the brain of the supplemented rabbits (P< 0.05). There was a lower concentration of the circulating malondialdehyde (MDA) in the serum and liver of the supplemented rabbits. The study concluded that Chlorella vulgaris intake led to reduced circulating malondialdehyde and increased activities of the brain antioxidant enzymes in the rabbits. The study indicated that the microalga Chlorella vulgaris contains antioxidant compounds that can cross the blood-brain barrier, which could be a very important therapeutic agent against oxidative stress-induced brain complications in animals and humans.


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eISSN: 1119-4308