OBJECTIVES: Chronic pancreatitis (CP) is a heterogeneous disease defined as chronic inflammatory changes of the pancreatic tissue caused by variety of aetiologies. Oxidative stress accompanying the inflammatory processes has been suggested as an important factor contributing to CP development. The aim of this study was to determine levels of lipid peroxidation products malondialdehyde (MDA) and 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE), together with nitrites and the total antioxidant capacity in the plasma of patients with CP and control subjects.
DESIGN: One hundred and five patients with chronic pancreatitis and twenty seven healthy controls were included into this study. Levels of MDA and 4-HNE were analyzed using high-performance liquid chromatography. The total antioxidant capacity of plasma against peroxyl radicals was evaluated using chemiluminescent determination. Nitrites were determined using Griess reaction. Biochemical and haematological parameters were measured by standard methods.
RESULTS: The plasma levels of both MDA and 4-HNE, together with the plasma levels of nitrites, were significantly higher in CP patients, compared to healthy controls. The total antioxidant capacity did not differ significantly. Biochemical parameters were in the normal range. The MDA and 4-HNE levels correlated positively with the levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Nitrite levels correlated positively with C-reactive protein, total white blood cells, and triglycerides.
CONCLUSION: The significantly increased plasma levels of MDA, 4-HNE, and nitrites indicate that oxidative stress is present in patients with CP and that it may play a role in initiation and maintenance of inflammation within the pancreatic tissue in CP patients.