The effect of carnosine treatment on prooxidant–antioxidant balance in liver, heart and brain tissues of male aged rats
8-hydroxy-deoxyguanosine adducts (8-OHdG), indices of oxidative DNA damage, were measured by immunohystochemistry with diaminobenzidine detection in the brain, skeletal muscle, heart, liver, tenuum mucosa and lymphocytes from young (4 months) and aged (24 months) Sprague-Dawley rats fed ad libitum or held on two different caloric restriction diets (alternate day ad libitum feeding or daily feeding with 40% reduced calories). In the absence of caloric restriction the levels of oxidative DNA damage increased as a function of age in all tissues examined, with a maximum approximately 3-fold increase being detected in the peripheral lymphocytes and the heart and a minimum approximately 2-fold increase being detected in the liver and brain tissues. Caloric restriction regimens effectively reduced age-dependent increase of oxidative DNA damage in all tissues examined; in particular, the brain and small intestine did not exhibit any age-related increase of oxidative DNA damage. We propose that the levels of 8-OHdG in peripheral lymphocytes may serve a biochemical index of age-related whole organism oxidative DNA damage. Immunohistochemistry might be exploited as a rapid and simple techniques for measuring lymphocytes oxidative DNA damage in large scale studies.