Next Article in Journal
Extraction of Antioxidant Phenolic Compounds from Brewer’s Spent Grain: Optimization and Kinetics Modeling
Previous Article in Journal
Microbial Biotransformation of a Polyphenol-Rich Potato Extract Affects Antioxidant Capacity in a Simulated Gastrointestinal Model
Previous Article in Special Issue
Antioxidant Tocols as Radiation Countermeasures (Challenges to be Addressed to Use Tocols as Radiation Countermeasures in Humans)
 
 
Order Article Reprints
Font Type:
Arial Georgia Verdana
Font Size:
Aa Aa Aa
Line Spacing:
Column Width:
Background:
Editorial

Vitamin E

Institute of Nutrition, Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Dornburger Str. 25-29, 07743 Jena, Germany
Antioxidants 2018, 7(3), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox7030044
Received: 19 March 2018 / Revised: 20 March 2018 / Accepted: 20 March 2018 / Published: 20 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Vitamin E)
Vitamin E is the major lipid-soluble antioxidant in the cell antioxidant system and is exclusively obtained from the diet. Vitamin E protects polyunsaturated fatty acids and other components of cell membranes and low-density lipoproteins from oxidation by free radicals. It is located primarily within the phospholipid bilayer of cell membranes. The most important form is α-tocopherol. Clinical signs of deficiency occur very rarely [1].
During the last ca. 100 years since the discovery of vitamin E, research has focused on different properties of this molecule, the focus often depending on the specific techniques and scientific knowledge present at each time. Originally discovered as a dietary factor essential for reproduction in rats, vitamin E has revealed many more important molecular properties meanwhile, such as the scavenging of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species with consequent prevention of oxidative damage associated with many diseases, or the modulation of signal transduction and gene expression in antioxidant and non-antioxidant manners [2].
This special issue highlights some of the recent advances in vitamin E research, showing the status quo on the one hand and providing new insights in functions and physiological relevance on the other hand. The review of Mène-Saffrané summarizes the current knowledge of tocochromanol biosynthesis in plants and highlights future challenges regarding the understanding of its regulation [3]. Adding to this topic, Fritsche et al. [4] review 30 years of research on tocopherols in model and crop species, with special emphasis on the improvement of vitamin E content using transgenic approaches and classical breeding [4]. Kodad et al. [5] report results for one of the most important nut species worldwide, the almond. Almond kernels show the highest levels of tocopherols among all nuts, being dependent on the genotype and the environment [5].
Reboul [6] describes the fate of vitamin E in the human gastrointestinal lumen during digestion. She focuses on the proteins involved in the intestinal membrane and cellular transport of vitamin E across the enterocyte and discusses factors modulating vitamin E micellarization and absorption. During the metabolism of vitamin E, the long-chain metabolites 13’-hydroxychromanol and 13’-carboxychromanol are formed by oxidative modification of the side-chain [7]. Their occurrence in human serum indicates a physiological relevance. Effects of these metabolites on lipid metabolism, apoptosis, proliferation, and inflammatory actions have been shown. Interestingly, the long-chain metabolites exerted effects different from that of their precursors [7]. Comitato et al. [8] review special biological activities of tocotrienols, not shared by tocopherols. Thus, tocotrienols showed the ability to inhibit cancer cell growth and induce apoptosis thanks to specific mechanisms. In addition, neuroprotective activities of tocotrienols are also presented [8].
Another part of this special issue presents specific effects of vitamin E. Mutalip et al. [9] answers the question: What are the known roles of vitamin E as an antioxidant in female reproductive health? This paper comes back to the initial discovery of vitamin E in 1922 as a substance necessary for reproduction. El Hadi et al. [10] discuss vitamin E as a potent antioxidant being able to reduce oxidative stress in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. They also present therapeutic efficacy. Nukala et al. [11] discuss another interesting application. They describe the efficacy of tocopherols and tocotrienols as radiation countermeasures and identify the challenges to be addressed to develop them into radiation countermeasures for human use. Mohn et al. [12] describe the membrane distribution of α-tocopherol in brain regions of adult rhesus monkeys. These authors also look for associations between membrane α-tocopherol and content of polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

References

  1. World Health Organization (WHO); Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Vitamin and Mineral Requirements in Human Nutrition: Report of a Joint FAO/WHO Expert Consultation, Bangkok, Thailand, 21–30 September 1998; WHO, FAO: Geneva, Switzerland, 2004; p. 341. [Google Scholar]
  2. Zingg, J.-M. Vitamin E: An overview of major research directions. Mol. Asp. Med. 2007, 28, 400–422. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. Mène-Saffrané, L. Vitamin E biosynthesis and its regulation in plants. Antioxidants 2018, 7, 2. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. Fritsche, S.; Wang, X.; Jung, C. Recent advances in our understanding of tocopherol biosynthesis in plants: An overview of key genes, functions, and breeding of vitamin E improved crops. Antioxidants 2017, 6, 99. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. Kodad, O.; Socias I Company, R.; Alonso, J.M. Genotypic and environmental effects on tocopherol content in almond. Antioxidants 2018, 7, 6. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. Reboul, E. Vitamin E bioavailability: Mechanisms of intestinal absorption in the spotlight. Antioxidants 2017, 6, 95. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. Schubert, M.; Kluge, S.; Schmölz, L.; Wallert, M.; Galli, F.; Birringer, M.; Lorkowski, S. Long-chain metabolites of vitamin E: Metabolic activation as a general concept for lipid-soluble vitamins? Antioxidants 2018, 7, 10. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. Comitato, R.; Ambra, R.; Virgili, F. Tocotrienols: A family of molecules with specific biological activities. Antioxidants 2017, 6, 93. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. Mutalip, S.S.M.; Ab-Rahim, S.; Rajikin, M.H. Vitamin E as an antioxidant in female reproductive health. Antioxidants 2018, 7, 22. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  10. El Hadi, H.; Vettor, R.; Rossato, M. Vitamin E as a treatment for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease: Reality of myth? Antioxidants 2018, 7, 12. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  11. Nukala, U.; Thakkar, S.; Krager, K.J.; Breen, P.J.; Compadre, C.M.; Aykin-Burns, N. Antioxidant tocols as radiation countermeasures (Challenges to be addressed to use tocols as radiation countermeasures in humans). Antioxidants 2018, 7, 33. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  12. Mohn, E.S.; Kuchan, M.J.; Erdman, J.W.; Neuringer, M.; Matthan, N.R.; Chen, C.-Y.O.; Johnson, E.J. The subcellular distribution of alpha-tocopherol in the adult primate brain and its relationship with membrane arachidonic acid and its oxidation products. Antioxidants 2017, 6, 97. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]

Share and Cite

MDPI and ACS Style

Böhm, V. Vitamin E. Antioxidants 2018, 7, 44. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox7030044

AMA Style

Böhm V. Vitamin E. Antioxidants. 2018; 7(3):44. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox7030044

Chicago/Turabian Style

Böhm, Volker. 2018. "Vitamin E" Antioxidants 7, no. 3: 44. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox7030044

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Metrics

Back to TopTop