In order to evaluate the pro-hemolytic action exerted by different classes of biogenic aldehydes, normal red cells obtained from human beings of both sexes were incubated at 37 degrees C under iso or hypo-osmotic conditions in the presence of hydroxyalkenals or alkanals, in a concentration compatible with those actually recovered during red cell lipid peroxidation. None of the tested aldehydes showed a direct hemolytic effect, i.e. red cell lysis in iso-osmotic conditions. Conversely, almost all assayed alkanals and hydroxyalkenals exhibited a pre-lytic damage of human erythrocytes, as detected in the red cells suspended in hypo-osmotic medium. The highest pro-hemolytic effect was displayed by hexanal, nonanal, 2-nonenal and 4-hydroxynonenal.
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