Beneficial Brew

Drinking green tea appears to boost the activity of DNA repair enzymes.

Rina Shaikh-Lesko
Jun 1, 2014

GOOD FOR YOUR ENZYMES: Green tea’s beneficial effects may be due to a boost in enzymes that protect and repair DNA. MCKAY SAVAGE/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

EDITOR'S CHOICE IN CELL & MOLECULAR BIOLOGY

The paper
C.K. Ho et al., “Effects of single dose and regular intake of green tea (Camellia sinensis) on DNA damage, DNA repair, and heme oxygenase-1 expression in a randomized controlled human supplementation study,” Mol Nutr Food Res, doi:10.1002/mnfr.201300751, 2014.

The context
Researchers have long reported that green tea drinkers have better health outcomes, but why that is has been unclear. To get to the cellular roots of these observations, Iris Benzie of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University and her colleagues monitored the activity of DNA repair enzymes in lymphocytes shortly after people drank a cup of green tea and after a week of drinking two cups of tea each day.

The findings
An enzyme critical for...