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DNA Damage

DNA damage refers to oxidative changes to DNA, which can be measured in the urine or in white blood cells. Reductions in DNA damage from antioxidant supplements are thought to reduce the risk of cancer development and mutations.

Research analysis led by Kamal Patel.
All content reviewed by the Examine.com Team. Published: Jul 5, 2013
Last Updated:

Human Effect Matrix

The Human Effect Matrix looks at human studies (it excludes animal and in vitro studies) to tell you what supplements affect dna damage
Grade Level of Evidence
Robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials
Multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled
Single double-blind study or multiple cohort studies
Uncontrolled or observational studies only
Level of Evidence
? The amount of high quality evidence. The more evidence, the more we can trust the results.
Outcome Magnitude of effect
? The direction and size of the supplement's impact on each outcome. Some supplements can have an increasing effect, others have a decreasing effect, and others have no effect.
Consistency of research results
? Scientific research does not always agree. HIGH or VERY HIGH means that most of the scientific research agrees.
grade-b Notable Very High See all 4 studies
DNA damage appears to be acutely decreased following consumption of blueberries or its extracts (375mg anthocyanins or more) and tends to be in the range of a 20% reduction.
grade-b - High See all 3 studies
While most evidence suggests no influence on DNA damage, it is possible based on some studies that when vitamin E turns prooxidative that it may damage DNA.
grade-c Notable - See study
The one study to measure DNA damage (via 8-oxo-dGF as a biomarker) noted up to 50% reductions in mitochondrial and urine measurements; a fairly significant reduction.
grade-c Minor Moderate See 2 studies
Creatine supplementation appears to reduce exercise-induced DNA damage. This is potentially promising with regard to cancer prevention.
grade-c Minor - See study
A decrease in DNA damage has been noted to be secondary to reducing arsenic toxicity
grade-c Minor - See study
A decrease in DNA damage biomarker has been noted, thought to be secondary to antioxidative effects
grade-c Minor - See study
Can decrease the rates of DNA damage noted in lymphocytes, which may be related to the anticancer effects of panax ginseng
grade-c Minor - See study
DNA damage biomarkers have been reduced following watercress consumption
grade-c - - See study
Has once failed to modify the DNA damage observed in male smokers
grade-c - - See study
No significant influence of citrulline on DNA damage
grade-c - Very High See 2 studies
Insufficient evidence to suggest alterations in the rate of DNA damage with CLA ingestion.
grade-c - Very High See 2 studies
Does not appear to influence DNA damage
grade-c - - See study
DNA damage in lymphocytes of volunteers given the polysaccharides appear unchanged
grade-c - - See study
grade-c - - See study
DNA damage as measured in lymphocytes does not appear to be significantly affected by supplementation of sea buckthorn
grade-c - Very High See 2 studies
No significant influences on DNA damage
grade-d Minor - See study
Urinary biomarkers of DNA damage are reduced in hypertensive persons following supplementation of garlic.
grade-d Minor - See study
A reduction in DNA damage has been noted with lemon balm tea in persons exposed to high levels of radiation
grade-d - - See study
One study assessing DNA damage following ingestion of chromium supplementation failed to find any harmful nor beneficial interactions.