Sime Darby Bhd continues to innovate, pushing the palm oil agenda to the fore.

Sime Darby Plantation Managing Director Datuk Franki Anthony Dass
stresses that R&D plays a critical role in the future of the palm oil industry. The breakthrough Sime Darby had with Genome Select means the new palms will be able to produce yields of about 11 tonnes oil yield per hectare using the same land. This is in line with the move towards more effective use of land, further reducing the need to expand agricultural land to cultivate more oil palm. The company’s R&D team is also shifting its focus to the downstream business, looking at specialty products and creating palm oil-based super food. “Palm oil-based foods will have various elements of health including anti-obesity and longevity. No other oil can match palm oil in its nutritional value,” he says. Palm oil is a rich source of antioxidants, including vitamin E such as tocotrienols, and carotenoids including beta-carotene and lycopene.

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Renowned researcher studies tocotrienols’ effect on bone health

High dietary intake of vitamin E (alpha tocopherol) was reported to decrease bone mass in rodents by Keio University team in 2012 1. However, this assumption may not be true, based on a new study conducted by researchers — led by the renowned Professor Maret Traber – at Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University. The new study demonstrates that oral administration of high dose of alpha-tocopherol as well as mixed-tocotrienol do not cause any significant negative effects on bone mass, bone microarchitecture, bone formation and bone marrow osteogenic (bone forming) gene expressions.

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Synergistic protective effect of FTY720 and vitamin E against simulated cerebral ischemia in vitro.

Pang X, Hou X

Mol Med Rep. 2017 May 11. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2017.6572. [Epub ahead of print]


The purpose of the present study was to explore the combination effect of FTY720 and vitamin E on cerebral ischemia. Astrocytes were isolated from newborn Sprague‑Dawley rats and were subjected to FTY720, vitamin E, or combination of the two. The astrocyte cultures were then exposed to oxygen‑glucose deprivation (OGD) to simulate an ischemic model in vitro. Cell viability, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) leakage and cell apoptosis were detected following 12 h of exposure to OGD. In addition, the levels of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)‑α, interleukin (IL)‑6, IL‑1β, total antioxidant capacity, intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM)‑1, vascular cell adhesion molecule (VCAM)‑1, chemokine (C‑X‑C motif) ligand (CXCL)‑10, heme oxygenase (HO)‑1 and superoxide dismutase (SOD)‑1 were measured. Pre‑treatment with FTY720 or vitamin E significantly elevated the cell viability and decreased LDH release and number of apoptotic cells. Combination treatment with FTY720 and vitamin E demonstrated a synergistic protective effect on OGD‑induced cell viability, toxicity and apoptosis. Pre‑treatment with FTY720 markedly reduced the release of IL‑1β, TNF‑α, IL‑6, ICAM‑1, VCAM‑1 and CXCL‑10, and pre‑treatment with vitamin E increased the levels of antioxidant, HO‑1 and SOD‑1. However, pre‑treatment with FTY720 combined with vitamin E revealed a synergistic effect. Pre‑treatment with FTY720 combined with vitamin E exerts synergistic neuroprotective effects in the simulated cerebral ischemia in vitro.

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δ-Tocotrienol, a natural form of vitamin E, inhibits pancreatic cancer stem-like cells and prevents pancreatic cancer metastasis.

Husain K, Centeno BA, Coppola D, Trevino J, Sebti SM, Malafa MP

Oncotarget. 2017 May 9;8(19):31554-31567. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.15767.


The growth, metastasis, and chemotherapy resistance of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is characterized by the activation and growth of tumor-initiating cells in distant organs that have stem-like properties. Thus, inhibiting growth of these cells may prevent PDAC growth and metastases. We have demonstrated that δ-tocotrienol, a natural form of vitamin E (VEDT), is bioactive against cancer, delays progression, and prevents metastases in transgenic mouse models of PDAC. In this report, we provide the first evidence that VEDT selectively inhibits PDAC stem-like cells. VEDT inhibited the viability, survival, self-renewal, and expression of Oct4 and Sox2 transcription factors in 3 models of PDAC stem-like cells. In addition, VEDT inhibited the migration, invasion, and several biomarkers of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and angiogenesis in PDAC cells and tumors. These processes are critical for tumor metastases. Furthermore, in the L3.6pl orthotopic model of PDAC metastases, VEDT significantly inhibited growth and metastases of these cells. Finally, in an orthotopic xenograft model of human PDAC stem-like cells, we showed that VEDT significantly retarded the growth and metastases of gemcitabine-resistant PDAC human stem-like cells. Because VEDT has been shown to be safe and to reach bioactive levels in humans, this work supports investigating VEDT for chemoprevention of PDAC metastases.

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Rising Health Awareness Among People to Propel the Global Market for Mixed Tocopherol – Press Release

Albany, NY — (SBWIRE) — 05/09/2017 — Tocopherol has the capacity to protect and fight many diseases such as restless leg syndrome, neurogenic problems, Huntington’s chorea, oral cancer, lung cancer, and Parkinson’s disease. This is the reason why the awareness about the health benefits of tocopherol among people is spreading in many emerging nations. Tocopherol or vitamin E, obtained from nuts, spinach, tomatoes, and almonds is used for various reasons. The application of mixed tocopherol is increasing in the pharmaceutical industries, which is a key factor expected to propel the global mixed tocopherol market. A large number of pharma companies are using tocopherol to manufacture medicines that can cure various health issues.

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Alterations of plasma concentrations of lipophilic antioxidants are associated with Guillain-Barre syndrome.

Tang HY, Ho HY, Chiu DT, Huang CY, Cheng ML, Chen CM

Clin Chim Acta. 2017 May 2;470:75-80. doi: 10.1016/j.cca.2017.05.001. [Epub ahead of print]



Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is an acute inflammatory polyneuropathy resulting in demyelination in peripheral nervous system. Myelin enriched in lipids is easily oxidized by reactive oxygen species during inflammation. Oxidative stress and lipophilic anti-oxidative capacities in GBS patients have not been fully explored. To evaluate the redox status of GBS patients, we measured malondialdehyde (MDA), myeloperoxidase (MPO), lipophilic antioxidants, and tocopherols concentrations in plasma from GBS patients and age-matched healthy controls.


Concentrations of γ-tocopherol and δ-tocopherol decreased significantly, and α-carotene significantly increased in GBS patients compared to healthy controls. However, no significant changes in MDA and MPO concentrations were detected. In GBS patients, the γ-tocopherol concentration correlated positively with concentrations of δ-tocopherol, α-tocopherol, lutein, Q10, and γ-CEHC, respectively. Similarly, the δ-tocopherol concentration correlated positively with γ-tocopherol, α-tocopherol, lutein, Q10, δ-CEHC, and γ-CEHC concentrations, respectively. The receiver operating characteristics curve analysis showed that γ-tocopherol may serve as a good predictor for GBS.


Diminished lipophilic antioxidant defense, mainly γ-tocopherol and δ-tocopherol, in GBS patients accounting for their lowered resistance to reactive oxygen species is probably associated with pathogenesis of GBS, and potentially useful for the development of therapeutic strategies.

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Synergistic Impact of d-δ-Tocotrienol and Geranylgeraniol on the Growth and HMG CoA Reductase of Human DU145 Prostate Carcinoma Cells.

Yeganehjoo H, DeBose-Boyd R, McFarlin BK, Mo H

Nutr Cancer. 2017 May-Jun;69(4):682-691. doi: 10.1080/01635581.2017.1299876. Epub 2017 Mar 31.


The growth-suppressive effect of d-δ-tocotrienol and geranylgeraniol is at least partially attributed to their impact on 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG CoA) reductase, the rate-limiting enzyme in the mevalonate pathway that provides essential intermediates for the posttranslational modification of growth-related proteins including RAS. We hypothesize that these agents synergistically impact cell growth based on their complementary mechanisms of action with HMG CoA reductase. d-δ-tocotrienol (0-40 µmol/L; half maximal inhibitory concentration [IC50] = 15 µmol/L) and geranylgeraniol (0-100 µmol/L; IC50 = 60 µmol/L) each induced concentration-dependent suppression of the growth of human DU145 prostate carcinoma cells. Blends of the two agents synergistically suppressed the growth of DU145 cells, with combination index values ranging 0.67-0.75. While 7.5 µmol/L d-δ-tocotrienol and 30 µmol/L geranylgeraniol individually had no impact on cell cycle distribution in DU145 cells, a blend of the agents induced cell cycle arrest at the G1 phase. The synergistic downregulation of the expression of HMG CoA reductase by 7.5 µmol/L d-δ-tocotrienol and 30 µmol/L geranylgeraniol was accompanied by a reduction in membrane K-RAS protein. Our finding supports the cancer chemopreventive action of plant-based diets and their isoprenoid constituents. Properly formulated isoprenoids and derivatives may provide novel approaches in prostate cancer prevention and therapy.

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