Orgotein, SOD, Super Dioxide Dismutase, Superóxido Dismutasa, Superoxydase Dismutase, Superoxyde Dismutase.


Overview Information

Superoxide dismutase is an enzyme found in all living cells. An enzyme is a substance that speeds up certain chemical reactions in the body. The superoxide dismutase that is used as medicine is sometimes taken from cows. Some types of superoxide dismutase come from the melon, and some are made in a lab.

Superoxide dismutase is given as a shot for treating pain and swelling (inflammation) caused by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It is also taken by mouth, given as a shot, or applied directly to the eyes for other conditions. But there is no good scientific research to support its other uses.

How does it work?

Superoxide dismutase is an enzyme that helps break down potentially harmful oxygen molecules in cells. This might prevent damage to tissues. It is being researched to see if it can help conditions where harmful oxygen molecules are believed to play a role in disease.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Osteoarthritis. Giving superoxide dismutase with a needle into the joint helps to reduce pain in people with osteoarthritis.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Giving superoxide dismutase with a needle into the joint helps to reduce pain and stiffness in people with RA.

Likely InEffective for

  • Heart attack. Giving superoxide dismutase with a needle does not seem to help to reduce heart damage after a heart attack.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • A lung disease that affects newborns (bronchopulmonary dysplasia). Early research suggests that giving superoxide dismutase with a needle to premature infants with lung problems reduces some symptoms.
  • An open sore (ulcer) on the cornea of the eye. Early research suggests that a specific eye solution of superoxide dismutase might help reduce ulcer size and improve healing when applied to the eye for at least 2 weeks.
  • Painful bladder syndrome (interstitial cystitis). Early research suggests that giving superoxide dismutase with a needle does not help reduce pain in people with painful bladder syndrome.
  • Pneumonia. Early research suggests that giving superoxide dismutase with a needle does not improve lung function in people with a type of lung problem known as idiopathic interstitial pneumonia.
  • Stress. Early research suggests that taking superoxide dismutase reduces stress by a small amount.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Gout.
  • Cancer.
  • Helping people tolerate radiation therapy.
  • Neck pain.
  • Nerve pain in people with diabetes (diabetic neuropathy).
  • Preventing rejection after kidney transplant.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of superoxide dismutase for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

When taken by mouth: Superoxide dismutase is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth for a short amount of time.

When given as an injection: Superoxide dismutase is POSSIBLY SAFE when given as an injection into the vein (IV), muscle, or joint by a healthcare provider for a short amount of time.

Some superoxide dismutase products are obtained from animal sources, raising concern about contamination from sick or diseased animals. Though there are no reports of people getting sick after using superoxide dismutase products taken from animals, it's best to avoid products from animal sources until more is known. Some people might be allergic to superoxide dismutase products.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Children: When given as an injection under the skin by a healthcare provider, superoxide dismutase is POSSIBLY SAFE in infants.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of superoxide dismutase during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.



We currently have no information for SUPEROXIDE DISMUTASE (SOD) Interactions.



The following doses have been studied in scientific research:



  • For osteoarthritis: Healthcare providers give superoxide dismutase as an injection into the joints once every 1-2 weeks.
  • For rheumatoid arthritis (RA): Healthcare providers give superoxide dismutase as an injection into the joints once per week.

View References


  • Murohara Y, Yui Y, Hattori R, et al. Effects of superoxide dismutase on reperfusion arrhythmias and left ventricular function in patients undergoing thrombolysis for anterior wall acute myocardial infarction. Am J Cardiol 1991;67:765-7.
  • Nielsen OS, Overgaard J, Overgaard M, et al. Orgotein in radiation treatment of bladder cancer. A report on allergic reactions and lack of radioprotective effect. Acta Oncol 1987;26:101-4. View abstract.
  • Noor R, Mittal S, Iqbal J. Superoxide dismutase--applications and relevance to human diseases. Med Sci Monit 2002;8:RA210-5. View abstract.
  • Pollak R, Andrisevic JH, Maddux MS, et al. A randomized double-blind trial of the use of human recombinant superoxide dismutase in renal transplantation. Transplantation 1993;55:57-60. View abstract.
  • Rosenfeld W, Evans H, Concepcion L, et al. Prevention of bronchopulmonary dysplasia by administration of bovine superoxide dismutase in preterm infants with respiratory distress syndrome. J Pediatr 1984;105:781-5. View abstract.
  • Sanchiz F, Milla A, Artola N, et al. Prevention of radioinduced cystitis by orgotein: a randomized study. Anticancer Res, 1996;16(4A):2025-8. View abstract.
  • Shimmura S, Igarashi R, Taguchi H, et al. Lecithin-bound superoxide dismutase in the treatment of noninfectious corneal ulcers. Am J Ophthalmol 2003;135:613-9. View abstract.
  • Walravens M, Dequeker J. Comparison of gold and orgotein treatment in rheumatoid arthritis. Curr Ther Res Clin Exp 1976;20:62-9.
  • Bertolotto F., Massone A. Combination of alpha lipoic acid and superoxide dismutase leads to physiological and symptomatic improvements in diabetic neuropathy. Drugs R D 2012;12(1):29-34. View abstract.
  • Broadley MR, White PJ. Eats roots and leaves. Can edible horticultural crops address dietary calcium, magnesium and potassium deficiencies? Proc Nutr Soc 2010;69(4):601-12. View abstract.
  • Carillon J, Notin C, Schmitt K, et al. Dietary supplementation with a superoxide dismutase-melon concentrate reduces stress, physical and mental fatigue in healthy people: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Nutrients 2014;6(6):2348-59. View abstract.
  • de Benito V, de Barrio M, de Lopez-Saez MP, et al. Anaphylactic shock caused by impurities in orgotein preparations. Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 2001;29:272-5.. View abstract.
  • Flaherty JT, Pitt B, Gruber JW, et al. Recombinant human superoxide dismutase (h-SOD) fails to improve recovery of ventricular function in patients undergoing coronary angioplasty for acute myocardial infarction. Circulation 1994;89:1982-91. View abstract.
  • Gammer W, Broback LG. Clinical comparison of orgotein and methylprednisolone acetate in the treatment of osteoarthrosis of the knee joint. Scand J Rheumatol 1984;13:108-12. View abstract.
  • Goebel KM, Storck U, Neurath F. Intrasynovial orgotein therapy in rheumatoid arthritis. Lancet 1981;1:1015-7. View abstract.
  • Goebel KM, Storck U. Effect of intra-articular orgotein versus a corticosteroid on rheumatoid arthritis of the knees. Am J Med 1983;74:124-8. View abstract.
  • Kadrnka F. [Results of a multicenter orgotein study in radiation induced and interstitial cystitis]. Eur J Rheumatol Inflamm 1981;4:237-43. View abstract.
  • Kamio K, Azuma A, Ohta K, et al. Double-blind controlled trial of lecithinized superoxide dismutase in patients with idiopathic interstitial pneumonia - short term evaluation of safety and tolerability. BMC Pulm Med 2014;14:86. View abstract.
  • Land W, Schneeberger H, Schleibner S, et al. The beneficial effect of human recombinant superoxide dismutase on acute and chronic rejection events in recipients of cadaveric renal transplants. Transplantation 1994;57:211-7. View abstract.
  • Letizia Mauro G, Cataldo P, Barbera G, Sanfilippo A. a-Lipoic acid and superoxide dismutase in the management of chronic neck pain: a prospective randomized study. Drugs R D 2014;14(1):1-7. View abstract.
  • Lewis CJ. Letter to reiterate certain public health and safety concerns to firms manufacturing or importing dietary supplements that contain specific bovine tissues. FDA. Available at:
  • McIlwain H, Silverfield JC, Cheatum DE, et al. Intra-articular orgotein in osteoarthritis of the knee: a placebo-controlled efficacy, safety, and dosage comparison. Am J Med 1989;87:295-300. View abstract.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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© Therapeutic Research Faculty 2018.