Role of Glutathione in Protection Against Oxidative Stress and Related Diseases to be Presented at IAACN Scientific Symposium

John Richie, Ph.D., Professor of Public Health Sciences & Pharmacology with Penn State University College of Medicine will present "Role of Glutathione in Protection Against Oxidative Stress and Related Diseases" at the 20th Annual International and American Associations of Clinical Nutritionists (IAACN) Scientific Symposium on Thursday, August 18 at 5:30 p.m. at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel.

In his session, Dr. Richie will discuss: the relationship between oxidative stress and disease; the important role of glutathione in detoxification, redox reactions and as an antioxidant; the causes of glutathione depletion and deficiency; as well as current supporting data on bioavailability of orally administered glutathione.

Glutathione is a tri-peptide, made from glutamic acid, cysteine, and glycine. As the master antioxidant of the cell, glutathione increases the effectiveness of the body's other antioxidants like Vitamin C and E and is involved in various reactions, such as the destruction of free radicals and the detoxification of harmful compounds. Numerous studies have supported the use of oral glutathione even though increases in glutathione levels may not be apparent in all tissues.  For example, orally administered glutathione is not generally accompanied by an increase of glutathione levels in liver, which is the main storehouse and exporter of glutathione in the body. However, this lack of affect in the liver is not likely due to a lack of bioavailability. Data by Dr. Richie and others clearly demonstrates the effectiveness of oral glutathione at enhancing the glutathione content of other critical tissues and its ability to protect against a variety of important disease processes.

About John Richie, Ph.D.

Dr. Richie has been researching glutathione for more than 25 years, including its role in protecting against oxidative damage during aging and the development of cancer at numerous sites. His research focuses on the factors that regulate glutathione, oxidative stress and cancer risk in individuals and in populations, as well as on the elucidation of factors that regulate cancer risk in individuals and in populations. Using an interdisciplinary research approach, the aim is to identify the roles and mechanisms of key factors, alone and in combination, which impact cancer risk with the ultimate goal of utilizing this information in the design and development of targeted prevention strategies. The major areas of focus include aging, nutrition, tobacco and race/ethnicity as regulators or determinants of cancer risk. Particular emphasis is given to factors related to the generation of and protection against oxidative damage. Dr. Ritchie is also examining the role of glutathione, the major endogenous antioxidant in nearly all cells and tissues, in protecting against oxidative damage during aging and its relationship with cancer development at numerous sites.

Dr. Richie holds the following degrees:
B.S., Biology, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 1978
M.S., Biochemistry, University of Louisville, 1983
Ph.D., Biochemistry, University of Louisville, 1986

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