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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(12), 2107; doi:10.3390/ijms17122107

α-Tocopherol and Hippocampal Neural Plasticity in Physiological and Pathological Conditions

1
Department of Biomolecular Sciences, University of Urbino, 61029 Urbino, Italy
2
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Perugia, 06123 Perugia, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Rafat A. Siddiqui, Maria Laura Colombo and Laura Di Renzo
Received: 14 October 2016 / Revised: 1 December 2016 / Accepted: 9 December 2016 / Published: 15 December 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tocopherols and Tocotrienols: Metabolism and Properties)
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Abstract

Neuroplasticity is an “umbrella term” referring to the complex, multifaceted physiological processes that mediate the ongoing structural and functional modifications occurring, at various time- and size-scales, in the ever-changing immature and adult brain, and that represent the basis for fundamental neurocognitive behavioral functions; in addition, maladaptive neuroplasticity plays a role in the pathophysiology of neuropsychiatric dysfunctions. Experiential cues and several endogenous and exogenous factors can regulate neuroplasticity; among these, vitamin E, and in particular α-tocopherol (α-T), the isoform with highest bioactivity, exerts potent effects on many plasticity-related events in both the physiological and pathological brain. In this review, the role of vitamin E/α-T in regulating diverse aspects of neuroplasticity is analyzed and discussed, focusing on the hippocampus, a brain structure that remains highly plastic throughout the lifespan and is involved in cognitive functions. Vitamin E-mediated influences on hippocampal synaptic plasticity and related cognitive behavior, on post-natal development and adult hippocampal neurogenesis, as well as on cellular and molecular disruptions in kainate-induced temporal seizures are described. Besides underscoring the relevance of its antioxidant properties, non-antioxidant functions of vitamin E/α-T, mainly involving regulation of cell signaling molecules and their target proteins, have been highlighted to help interpret the possible mechanisms underlying the effects on neuroplasticity. View Full-Text
Keywords: vitamin E; brain; neuroplasticity; development; adult neurogenesis; seizures vitamin E; brain; neuroplasticity; development; adult neurogenesis; seizures
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ambrogini, P.; Betti, M.; Galati, C.; Di Palma, M.; Lattanzi, D.; Savelli, D.; Galli, F.; Cuppini, R.; Minelli, A. α-Tocopherol and Hippocampal Neural Plasticity in Physiological and Pathological Conditions. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 2107.

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