Antioxidant status following postprandial challenge of two different doses of tocopherols and tocotrienols

Fairus S, Cheng HM, Sundram K

Integr Med. 2020 Jan;18(1):68-79. doi: 10.1016/j.joim.2019.11.005. Epub 2019 Nov 23.



Tocotrienols (T3s) have been hypothesized to have greater antioxidant capacity than tocopherols (Ts) due to differences in biokinetics that affect their absorption and function. The present trial compares the antioxidant effectiveness following postprandial challenge of two different doses of α-T or palm T3-rich fraction (TRF) treatments and evaluates their dose-response effects on antioxidant status.


Ten healthy volunteers were given four different doses of vitamin E formulations (268 mg α-T, 537 mg α-T, 263 mg TRF or 526 mg TRF) in a cross-over postprandial trial. Blood was sampled at 0, 2, 4, 5, 6 and 8 hours after meal consumption and plasma antioxidant status including total glutathione, superoxide dismutase, malondialdehyde (MDA), ferric reducing antioxidant potential and trolox-equivalent antioxidant capacity, was analyzed.


Supplementation with the different doses of either α-T or TRF did not significantly improve overall antioxidant status. There was no significant difference in overall antioxidant status among treatments at the different doses compared. However, a significant dose-response effect was observed for plasma MDA throughout the 8-hour postprandial period. MDA was significantly lower after the 537 mg α-T treatment, compared to the 268 mg α-T treatment; it was also lower after the 526 mg TRF treatment compared to the 263 mg TRF treatment (P < 0.05).


T3 and α-T demonstrated similar antioxidant capacity, despite markedly lower levels of T3 in blood and lipoproteins, compared to α-T.

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Gamma tocopherol, its dimmers, and quinones: Past and future trends

Zheng L, Jin J, Shi L, Huang J, Chang M, Wang X, Zhang H, Jin Q

Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2020 Jan 20:1-15. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2020.1711704. [Epub ahead of print]


Gamma-tocopherol (γ-T), the major form of vitamin E in many plant seeds and products derived from them, has been attracting increasing attention because of its health-promoting roles. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms are still unclear, to some degree. Furthermore, its dimmers and quinones are expected to be potential nutritious and pharmaceutical agents, however, the knowledge about these dimmers (γ-TBD and γ-TED) and quinones (para– and ortho-quinones) is relatively limited. Thus, a comprehensive summary of the history, chemical structure, source, determination, absorption, transport, and metabolism of its dimmers and quinones compared to γ-T has been reviewed. In addition, the antioxidant activity (AOA) and non-AOA activity of these substances are highlighted. It is suggested that more special attention be paid to the dimmers and quinones for better understanding and further applications.

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Synthesis and Liver Microsomal Metabolic Stability Studies of a Fluorine-Substituted δ-Tocotrienol Derivative

Liu X1,, Poddar S, Song L, Hendrickson H, Zhang X, Yuan Y, Zhou D, Zheng G

ChemMedChem. 2020 Jan 19. doi: 10.1002/cmdc.201900676.


A fluoro-substituted δ-tocotrienol derivative, DT3-F2, was synthesized. This compound was designed to stabilize the metabolically labile terminal methyl groups of δ-tocotrienol by replacing one C-H bond on each of the two methyl groups with a C-F bond. However, in vitro metabolic stability studies using mouse liver microsomes revealed an unexpected rapid enzymatic C-F bond hydrolysis of DT3-F2. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of an unusual metabolic hydrolysis of allylic C-F bonds.

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Potential Role of Tocotrienols on Non-Communicable Diseases: A Review of Current Evidence

Wong SK, Kamisah Y, Mohamed N, Muhammad N, Masbah N, Fahami NAM, Mohamed IN, Shuid AN, Saad QM, Abdullah A, Mohamad NV, Ibrahim NI, Pang KL, Chow YY, Thong BKS, Subramaniam S, Chan CY, Ima-Nirwana S, Chin AK

Nutrients. 2020 Jan 19;12(1). pii: E259. doi: 10.3390/nu12010259.


Tocotrienol (T3) is a subfamily of vitamin E known for its wide array of medicinal properties. This review aimed to summarize the health benefits of T3, particularly in prevention or treatment of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), including cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, metabolic, gastric, and skin disorders, as well as cancers. Studies showed that T3 could prevent various NCDs, by suppressing 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase (HMGCR) in the mevalonate pathway, inflammatory response, oxidative stress, and alternating hormones. The efficacy of T3 in preventing/treating these NCDs is similar or greater compared to tocopherol (TF). TF may lower the efficacy of T3 because the efficacy of the combination of TF and T3 was lower than T3 alone in some studies. Data investigating the effects of T3 on osteoporosis, arthritis, and peptic ulcers in human are limited. The positive outcomes of T3 treatment obtained from the preclinical studies warrant further validation from clinical trials.

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γ-Tocotrienol and α-Tocopherol Ether Acetate Enhance Docetaxel Activity in Drug-Resistant Prostate Cancer Cells

Asay S, Graham A, Hollingsworth S, Barnes B, Oblad RV, Michaelis DJ, Kenealey JD

Molecules. 2020 Jan 18;25(2). pii: E398. doi: 10.3390/molecules25020398.


Prostate cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer in men, and metastatic prostate cancer is currently incurable. Prostate cancer frequently becomes resistant to standard of care treatments, and the administration of chemotherapeutic drugs is often accompanied by toxic side effects. Combination therapy is one tool that can be used to combat therapeutic resistance and drug toxicity. Vitamin E (VE) compounds and analogs have been proposed as potential non-toxic chemotherapeutics. Here we modeled combination therapy using mixture design response surface methodology (MDRSM), a statistical technique designed to optimize mixture compositions, to determine whether combinations of three chemotherapeutic agents: γ-tocotrienol (γ-T3), α-tocopherol ether acetate (α-TEA), and docetaxel (DOC), would prove more effective than docetaxel alone in the treatment of human prostate cancer cells. Response surfaces were generated for cell viability, and the optimal treatment combination for reducing cell viability was calculated. We found that a combination of 20 µM γ-T3, 30 µM α-TEA, and 25 nm DOC was most effective in the treatment of PC-3 cells. We also found that the combination of γ-T3 and α-TEA with DOC decreased the amount of DOC required to reduce cell viability in PC-3 cells and ameliorated therapeutic resistance in DOC-resistant PC-3 cells.

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Evaluation the Effects of Alpha-tocopherol in Comparison with N-acetylcystein for Prevention of Contrast Induced Nephropathy (CIN) in CKD Patients

Vineetha RC, Hariharan S, Jaleel A, Chandran M, Nair RH

Iran J Kidney Dis. 2020 Jan;14(1):26-30.


Chemosensitization is an effective strategy to overcome the drawbacks of arsenic trioxide (As2O3) treatment, which may be possible through the use of dietary supplements in combination. The present investigation evaluates the synergistic mechanism of action of vitamins, such as L-ascorbic acid (L-AA) and α-tocopherol (α-TOC) in As2O3 chemotherapy using human leukemia (HL-60) cells. In vitro assays on the cytotoxicity of As2O3 and vitamins and cellular apoptotic evidences were done; a proteomic investigation with mass spectrometry was also performed. The combination of L-AA and α-TOC potentiates As2O3 cytotoxicity in HL-60 cells, substantiated by depletion in antioxidant status, mitochondrial transmembrane potential, and inhibition of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 and B-cell lymphoma 2 transcription factors. Mass spectrometry results showed decreased expression of proteins regulating cell cycle and translation in cells treated with As2O3, L-AA, and α-TOC when compared with As2O3-treated sample. In addition, this combination treatment identified numerous proteins associated with apoptosis and cell stress. HL-60 cells became more prone to As2O3 on exposure to L-AA and α-TOC, indicating that this combination may be a promising approach to increase the outcome of As2O3 chemotherapy.

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In general, palm oil/palm olein offers the best option as frying oil; it has excellent frying performance and because palm oil is produced all year round, there is ample supply throughout the year for the food industry worldwide. As such, it is a lot easier for the food industry to stick to the same product formulations to keep the taste and quality of the food consistent.

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