Glutathione Peroxidase (GPx)
Glutathione peroxidase (GPx) is an antioxidant enzyme "family". GPx functions in the scavenging and inactivating of hydrogen and lipid peroxides, thereby protecting the body against oxidative stress.
In fact, it is one of the most important antioxidant enzymes in humans.
Although GPx is an antioxidant enzyme, it is not glutathione (GSH), the master antioxidant made within the cells (and the main subject of this website).
Nevertheless, GPx plays a very crucial role in our bodies as it is a free radical scavenger that protects the body from oxidation.
Thankfully, GPx, is abundantly found in fruits and vegetables.
GPx contains selenium and was discovered in 1957 by Gordon C. Mills.
There have been eight different members of the GPx family that have been identified in humans: GPx1, GPx2, GPx3, GPx4, GPx5, Gpx6, GPx7, and finally, GPx8.
All eight have the same free radical scavenging functions but are tissue specific.
For example, GPx1 (the most abundant of all eight) is found throughout all the tissues in the human body, whereas GPx2 is mainly found in the intestines.
Interestingly, GPx5 is specifically expressed in the tissues of the male reproductive tract.
GPx5 seems to play an important role in protecting the delicate membranes of the spermatozoa (sperm) from the oxidative damage of lipid peroxidation. So it actually promotes healthy male sperm.
(Got Your Gloot, Men?)
By increasing one's glutathione (GSH) levels, you help the productivity of the glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and vice versa.
Just another reason on the importance of eating a diet rich in antioxidants by eating fruits and veggies, especially organic, "locally-grown" fruits and veggies that are rich in glutathione (GPx) and, of course, supplementing with an effective glutathione (GSH) enhancer.
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