The present paper reviews the current state of our knowledge of the role of oxidative stress in the mechanism underlying chlorpyrifos poisoning, and the role of some antioxidants in ameliorating adverse effect of pesticides. In order to understand better the nature of oxidative stress, the principle of free radical generation, the body’s normal defense system including antioxidants are discussed. The adverse health effects of the organophosphate, chlorpyrifos and their ability to induce oxidative stress through the generation of free radicals and alteration in body antioxidant status were also discussed. Some antioxidant molecules that have been proven to mitigate against chlorpyrifos induced toxicity were also enumerated. It is concluded that the generation of reactive oxygen species induces oxidative damages and disturbances of the antioxidant body defence systems, which are implicated in the mechanisms of toxicity in most pesticides, including chlorpyrifos were inhibited by some of the antioxidants. It is recommended that further research be geared towards identifying more agents that may ameliorate chlorpyrifos and other organophosphates of adverse effects.
Key words: Pesticides, chlorpyrifos, oxidative stress, free radicals, toxicity, antioxidant.
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