Physiol. Res. 52: 555-562, 2003

Effect of Resveratrol on Some Activities of Isolated and in Whole Blood Human Neutrophils


Department of Experimental Pathology and Microbiology, 1Department of Environmental Sanitary Social and Industrial Protectionistic and 2Department of Surgical Specialities, Medical School, University of Messina, Messina, Italy

Received July 19, 2002
Accepted November 12, 2002

Resveratrol, which is a polyphenol present in red wines and vegetables included in human diets, exerts many biological effects. The aim of the present study was to investigate its effect on some activities of polymorphonuclear leukocytes, particularly the generation of superoxide anion (O2-) in whole blood, hypochlorous acid (HOCl) and nitric oxide (NO) production by isolated cells, and chemotaxis. Resveratrol showed significant dose-dependent inhibitory effect on all these activities. In particular, it inhibited O2- generation in stimulated but not in resting neutrophils, decreased HOCl much more than O2- production indicating an effect on myeloperoxidase secretion since HOCl production is directly and proportionally dependent on O2- generation and reduced cell motility. The small dose of resveratrol (4.38 nM) used is attainable with a diet including red wine and vegetables confirming its protective role against some pathological processes such as inflammation, coronary heart disease, and cancer.

Key words
Resveratrol Neutrophils Reactive oxygen species Chemotaxis

Reprint requests
Vincenzo Fimiani, Department of Experimental Pathology and Microbiology, Pathology General Section, Policlinico Universitario, Torre Biologica, Via Consolare Valeria, I-98125 Messina, Italy, e-mail :

2003 by the Institute of Physiology, Czech Academy of Sciences