The Relationship between Serum Vitamin E Level and Risk Factors for Arteriosclerosis in Japanese Postmenopausal Women

Yuka Nakatsu, Shumpei Niida, Kiyoshi Tanaka, Shigeo Takenaka, Akiko Kuwabara

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo) . 2020;66(3):213-218. doi: 10.3177/jnsv.66.213.


Since vitamin E is one of the most potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents, vitamin E can play a role against arteriosclerosis through various actions. Then, we have studied the relationship between serum vitamin E status and risk factors for arteriosclerosis in Japanese postmenopausal women. One hundred and seven subjects (70.0±7.7 y) were evaluated for vitamin E status by measuring serum α- and γ-tocopherol (αT and γT) levels. The number of arteriosclerosis risk factors was defined by the existence of high blood pressure, hyperglycemia, and dyslipidemia. Median serum αT and γT concentrations were 24.32 and 2.79 μmol/L, respectively. In none of the subjects, serum αT level was below the cutoff value (<12 μmol/L) for vitamin E deficiency which causes fragile erythrocyte and hemolysis. While no significant differences were found in serum levels of αT and γT between the groups categorized by the number of arteriosclerosis risks, serum levels of αT adjusted by serum total cholesterol (TC) and triglyceride (TG) decreased with an increasing number of arteriosclerotic risk factors (p=0.074). Serum αT level adjusted by serum TC and TG was also a negative significant predictor for the number of arteriosclerosis risk factors controlled by covariates associated with arteriosclerosis. The present study described that serum vitamin E level was positively associated with a lower number of arteriosclerotic risks, and its role for preventing noncommunicable diseases was suggested.

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Age-related macular degeneration in a randomized trial of selenium and vitamin E in men: the Select Eye Endpoints (SEE) study (SWOG S0000B)

William G Christen, Amy K Darke, John M Gaziano, Robert J Glynn, Phyllis J Goodman, Lori M Minasian, Ian M Thompson Jr

Acta Ophthalmol . 2020 Jul 23. doi: 10.1111/aos.14538. Online ahead of print.

Lettter to the Editor

Selenium and vitamin E are found in the human retina and retinal pigment epithelium and have been associated with risks of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in observational epidemiological studies (Khoo et al. 2019). We examined a possible role for these nutrients in AMD prevention in the Select Eye Endpoints (SEE) Study, an ancillary study of the National Cancer Institute-sponsored Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT), a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of selenium (200 lg/d) and/or vitamin E (400 IU/d) in prevention of prostate cancer among 35 533 apparently healthy men aged 50 years and older (Lippman et al. 2005; Lippman et al. 2009).

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De Novo High-Titer Production of Delta-Tocotrienol in Recombinant Saccharomyces cerevisiae

Hong Sun, Jingli Yang, Xue Lin, Congfa Li, Yongjin He, Zhigang Cai, Guoyin Zhang, Hao Song

J Agric Food Chem . 2020 Jul 22;68(29):7710-7717. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.0c00294. Epub 2020 Jul 7.


Delta-tocotrienol as a vitamin E isomer has received much attention because of its diverse biomedical applications. Microbial biosynthesis of delta-tocotrienol is a promising strategy for its economic and environmental advantages. Here, we accomplished complete biosynthesis of delta-tocotrienol in Saccharomyces cerevisiae from glucose. We first constructed and incorporated a heterologous pathway into the genome of S. cerevisiae by incorporating the genes hpd (from Pseudomonas putida KT2440), hpt (from Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803), and vte1 (from Arabidopsis thaliana) for the biosynthesis of delta-tocotrienol. We further enhanced the biosynthesis of the precursor geranylgeranyl diphosphate by overexpressing the thmg1 and ggppssa (from Sulfolobus acidocaldarius) genes, leading to a production titer of delta-tocotrienol of 1.39 ± 0.01 mg/L. Finally, we optimized the fermentation medium using the response surface methodology, enabling a high-titer production of delta-tocotrienol (3.56 ± 0.25 mg/L), ∼2.6-fold of that of the initial culture medium. Fed-batch fermentation in a 2 L fermenter was further used to enhance the production titer of delta-tocotrienol (4.10 ± 0.10 mg/L). To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the de novo biosynthesis of delta-tocotrienol in S. cerevisiae, and the highest titer obtained for microbial production of delta-tocotrienol.

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Update on the Anti-Cancer Potency of Tocotrienols and α-Tocopheryl Polyethylene Glycol 1000 Succinate on Leukemic Cell Lines

Constantina Constantinou, Christiana Charalambous, Dimitrios Kanakis, Ourania Kolokotroni, Andreas I Constantinou

Nutr Cancer . 2020 Jul 22;1-7. doi: 10.1080/01635581.2020.1797128. Online ahead of print.


The natural isoforms of vitamin E γ-tocotrienol (γ-ΤΤ) and δ-tocotrienol (δ-ΤΤ) and the synthetic derivative α-tocopheryl polyethylene glycol 1000 succinate (TPGS) have promising anticancer potency in a variety of cancer cell lines and animal models of cancer. Ongoing clinical trials are investigating the anti-tumor effectiveness of TTs in combination with chemotherapeutic agents in patients suffering from breast, colon, non-small cell lung and ovarian cancers. Despite extensive research on different types of cancer, the anticancer potency of TTs and TPGS has not been thoroughly investigated in leukemias. Given the fact that certain types of leukemias have very low survival rates and that patients suffer significantly from the toxic side effects of chemotherapeutic drugs, there is a need to develop novel treatments with increased specificity against cancer cells and reduced toxicity to the patients. The aim of this review is to report current evidence on the anticancer potency of TTs and TPGS on leukemic cells lines and to discuss future studies that could be carried out to investigate the role of these agents in the management of leukemias.

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Platelet function in stroke/transient ischemic attack patients treated with tocotrienol

Andrew Slivka, Cameron Rink, David Paoletto, Chandan K Sen

FASEB J . 2020 Jul 20. doi: 10.1096/fj.201902216RR. Online ahead of print.


The purpose of this study was to characterize the effects of tocotrienol form of vitamin E (TCT) on platelet function in patients with stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA). A double blind, randomized, single center phase II clinical trial was conducted comparing placebo (PBO) and 400 and 800 mg TCT daily for a year in 150 patients with a sentinel ischemic stroke or TIA event in the prior 6 months. Platelet function was measured at baseline and then, at 3 month intervals for a year, using light transmission aggregometry. The incidence of aspirin resistance in aspirin-treated patients or platelet inhibition in patients on clopidogrel alone was compared between the three treatment groups. Results showed that in patients taking aspirin and clopidogrel, the incidence of aspirin resistance was significantly decreased from 40% in PBO-treated patients to 9% in the 400 mg TCT group and 25% in the TCT 800 mg group (P = .03). In conclusion, patients on aspirin and clopidogrel had a higher incidence of aspirin resistance than all patients treated with aspirin alone and TCT decreased the frequency of aspirin resistance in this group.

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Influence of specific management practices on blood selenium, vitamin E, and beta-carotene concentrations in horses and risk of nutritional deficiency

Mariya O Pitel, Erica C McKenzie, Jennifer L Johns, Robert L Stuart

J Vet Intern Med . 2020 Jul 20. doi: 10.1111/jvim.15862. Online ahead of print.


Background: Selenium or alpha-tocopherol deficiency can cause neuromuscular disease. Beta-carotene has limited documentation in horses.

Objective: To evaluate the effect of owner practices on plasma beta-carotene concentration and risk of selenium and alpha-tocopherol deficiencies.

Animals: Three-hundred and forty-nine adult (≥1 year), university and privately owned horses and mules.

Methods: Cross-sectional study. Whole blood selenium, plasma alpha-tocopherol, and plasma beta-carotene concentrations were measured once. Estimates of daily selenium and vitamin E intake, pasture access, and exercise load were determined by owner questionnaire. Data were analyzed using t tests, Mann-Whitney tests, parametric or nonparametric analysis of variance (ANOVA), Kruskal-Wallis test, Spearman’s correlation and contingency tables (P < .05).

Results: Nearly 88% of the horses received supplemental selenium; 71.3% received ≥1 mg/d. Low blood selenium concentration (<80 ng/mL) was identified in 3.3% of horses, and 13.6% had marginal concentrations (80-159 ng/mL). Non-supplemented horses were much more likely to have low blood selenium (odds ratio [OR], 20.2; 95% confidence interval [CI], 9.26-42.7; P < .001). Supplemental vitamin E was provided to 87.3% of horses; 57.7% received ≥500 IU/d. Deficient (<1.5 μg/mL) and marginal (1.5-2.0 μg/mL) plasma (alpha-tocopherol) occurred in 15.4% and 19.9% of horses, respectively. Pasture access (>6 h/d) and daily provision of ≥500 IU of vitamin E was associated (P < .001) with higher plasma alpha-tocopherol concentrations. Plasma beta-carotene concentration was higher in horses with pasture access (0.26 ± 0.43 versus 0.12 ± 0.13 μg/mL, P = .003).

Conclusions and clinical importance: Suboptimal blood selenium and plasma alpha-tocopherol concentrations occurred in 16.7% and 35.5% of horses, respectively, despite most owners providing supplementation. Inadequate pasture access was associated with alpha-tocopherol deficiency, and reliance on selenium-containing salt blocks was associated with selenium deficiency.

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Summary and evidence grading of over-the-counter scar treatments

Konstantin V Grigoryan, Jeremy T Kampp

Int J Dermatol . 2020 Jul 20. doi: 10.1111/ijd.15060. Online ahead of print.


Background: Many products claiming to improve scar appearance are readily available on the Internet. Data behind these claims are often difficult to find or summarize. Patients often ask their surgeon for advice for scarring postdermatologic surgery.

Objective: We aim to review the evidence behind several advertised products and techniques that claim to improve postsurgical scarring.

Methods: A PubMed search was performed using products and methods claiming to improve scar appearance along with the terms “scar” and “scarring”.

Results: Published literature on scar massage, taping of scars, silicone gel and sheeting, onion-based extract products, and vitamin E was reviewed. Silicone gel/sheeting as well as taping have the most evidence to help improve scarring, but even then the evidence is conflicting and weak.

Conclusion: Online advertising may tempt patients to buy and trial products to help minimize scarring, although the evidence for the effectiveness of these products is absent to minimal. Dermatologists must be aware of these products to maintain effective patient counseling.

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Application and Efficacy of Vitamin E-Bonded Polysulfone Membrane in Acute Blood Purification Therapy

Eiichi Himeno, Shigeru Goto, Satoru Inoue, Yoshihiro Hatanaka, Satoshi Hagiwara, Shigekiyo Matsumoto, Takaaki Kitano

Blood Purif . 2020 Jul 17;1-7. doi: 10.1159/000508276. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: Acute blood purification therapy (BPT) has been evaluated in the context of intensive care for serious conditions related to systemic inflammation, but its mechanism and efficacy are not fully understood.

Objective: This study examined the feasibility of using vitamin E-bonded polysulfone membranes (VEPS) for BPT in a LPS-induced rat model of systemic inflammation.

Methods: To evaluate the efficacy of BPT with a VEPS membrane, polysulfone (PS) membranes conventionally used in intensive care were bonded with the antioxidant vitamin E and used in a rat model of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced systemic inflammation. BPT using a PS membrane (PS group) or a VEPS membrane (VEPS group) was performed 6 h after administration of LPS. Extracorporeal circulation was established in normal rats as a control (sham group). Survival rates, histology of lung specimens, and levels of myeloperoxidase (MPO) and high mobility group box-1 (HMGB-1) were examined in each group.

Results: Survival rates at 24 h after LPS administration were 100% in the VEPS group and 50% in the PS group. Pulmonary architecture was largely maintained and the level of infiltration of inflammatory cells remained moderate in the VEPS group. Levels of active MPO before and after BPT were significantly higher in the PS and VEPS groups than in the sham group, with no significant differences between the PS and VEPS groups. HMGB-1 levels were significantly elevated after BPT in the PS group.

Conclusions: This study demonstrated that use of the VEPS membrane for BPT increased survival rate and reduced lung injury in a rat model of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), suggesting the possible use of VEPS membranes in the treatment of serious conditions related to systemic inflammation.

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Nutrient pattern of unsaturated fatty acids and vitamin E increase resting metabolic rate of overweight and obese women

Habib Yarizadeh, Leila Setayesh, Caroline Roberts, Mir Saeed Yekaninejad, Khadijeh Mirzaei

Int J Vitam Nutr Res . 2020 Jul 16;1-9. doi: 10.1024/0300-9831/a000664. Online ahead of print.


Objectives: Obesity plays an important role in the development of chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. A low resting metabolic rate (RMR) for a given body size and composition is a risk factor for obesity, however, there is limited evidence available regarding the association of nutrient patterns and RMR. The aim of this study was to determine the association of nutrient patterns and RMR in overweight and obese women. Study design: This cross-sectional study was conducted on 360 women who were overweight or obese. Method: Dietary intake was assessed using a semi-quantitative standard food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). Nutrient patterns were also extracted by principal components analysis (PCA). All participants were evaluated for their body composition, RMR, and blood parameters. Result: Three nutrient patterns explaining 64% of the variance in dietary nutrients consumption were identified as B-complex-mineral, antioxidant, and unsaturated fatty acid and vitamin E (USFA-vit E) respectively. Participants were categorized into two groups based on the nutrient patterns. High scores of USFA-vit E pattern was significantly associated with the increase of RMR (β = 0.13, 95% CI = 0.79 to 68.16, p = 0.04). No significant associations were found among B-complex-mineral pattern (β = -0.00, 95% CI = -49.67 to 46.03, p = 0.94) and antioxidant pattern (β = 0.03, 95% CI -41.42 to 22.59, p = 0.56) with RMR. Conclusion: Our results suggested that the “USFA-vit E” pattern (such as PUFA, oleic, linoleic, vit.E, α-tocopherol and EPA) was associated with increased RMR.

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Minister promotes Vitamin E in Parliament based on palm oil

Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali has encouraged Malaysians to take Vitamin E based on red palm oil — saying that it has good health benefits.

Speaking during Question Time in the Dewan Rakyat this morning, the PAS minister surprisingly backed his predecessor and DAP Seputeh lawmaker Teresa Kok, after she was teased by Jempol (BN) MP Datuk Salim Sharif.

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