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superoxide (and hence peroxynitrite) were generated at the site of the damaged
protein (1169). Carbonyls can be induced by almost all types of ROS and
hence do not shed significant light on the source of the oxidative stress. In
addition, carbonyls are relatively difficult to induce compared to methionine
sulfoxide and cysteinyl derivatives and thus may be reflective of more severe
cases of oxidative stress. Indeed, detection of elevated levels of protein car-
bonyls is generally a sign not only of oxidative stress but also of a disease-
associated dysfunction (690, 1170). The highly specific nature of protein
oxidation also leads to one of the disadvantages of using these macromolecules
as markers of oxidative stress; that is, there is no single universal marker for
protein oxidation. Because so many different protein oxidation products can
be formed, it may be necessary to set up several different assays in order to
find the most appropriate assay for the type of oxidative stress involved.
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