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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2013, Article ID 136539, 8 pages
Research Article

The Natural Stilbenoid Piceatannol Decreases Activity and Accelerates Apoptosis of Human Neutrophils: Involvement of Protein Kinase C

1Institute of Experimental Pharmacology and Toxicology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Dúbravská cesta 9, 841 04 Bratislava, Slovakia
2National Transfusion Service, Limbová 3, 831 01 Bratislava, Slovakia

Received 19 July 2013; Accepted 11 September 2013

Academic Editor: Tullia Maraldi

Copyright © 2013 Viera Jancinova et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Neutrophils are able to release cytotoxic substances and inflammatory mediators, which, along with their delayed apoptosis, have a potential to maintain permanent inflammation. Therefore, treatment of diseases associated with chronic inflammation should be focused on neutrophils; formation of reactive oxygen species and apoptosis of these cells represent two promising targets for pharmacological intervention. Piceatannol, a naturally occurring stilbenoid, has the ability to reduce the toxic action of neutrophils. This substance decreased the amount of oxidants produced by neutrophils both extra- and intracellularly. Radicals formed within neutrophils (fulfilling a regulatory role) were reduced to a lesser extent than extracellular oxidants, potentially dangerous for host tissues. Moreover, piceatannol did not affect the phosphorylation of p40phox—a component of NADPH oxidase, responsible for the assembly of functional oxidase in intracellular (granular) membranes. The stilbenoid tested elevated the percentage of early apoptotic neutrophils, inhibited the activity of protein kinase C (PKC)—the main regulatory enzyme in neutrophils, and reduced phosphorylation of PKC isoforms α, βII, and δ on their catalytic region. The results indicated that piceatannol may be useful as a complementary medicine in states associated with persisting neutrophil activation and with oxidative damage of tissues.