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Detection and Identification of Macromolecule-Derived Radicals By Epr Spin Trapping

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EPR spectroscopy in conjunction with spin trapping has been employed extensively and successfully to detect and identify low-molecular-weight reactive radicals in biological systems. In contrast, this technique has been relatively infrequently used to investigate high-molecular-weight species generated as a result of radical-induced damage to biological macromolecules, such as DNA, RNA, proteins and carbohydrates, despite the fact that the destruction or alteration of these materials is known to play a key role in a large number of cellular injuries and diseases. Recent progress in the detection and identification of these macromolecular radicals by EPR spin trapping is reviewed, with particular emphasis on supplementary techniques which often yield valuable information as to the nature and identity of the species detected.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry, University of York, York, YO1 5DD, U.K


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