Plasma Levels Of Tocopherols And Tocotrienols Help In Diagnosing Alzheimer’s Disease

Carotech Inc., the world’s largest and only GMP-certified tocotrienol/mixed carotene producer is pleased to share a follow up study that shows mixed vitamin E (tocotrienols and tocopherols) levels in the blood play an important role in the pathology of Alzheimer’s Disease. The use of combined vitamin E levels and brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measurements enhance the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease in diseased human subjects from cognitively intact controls.

Recruited from the AddNeuroMed project, a total of 253 subjects (81 patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), 86 mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and 86 cognitively intact control (CTL) subjects) participated in this research.

The AddNeuroMed project (part of InnoMed – Innovative Medicines in Europe) is a multicenter European longitudinal study on the detection of biomarkers for AD. It is one of the largest cohorts of AD and MCI subjects, gathered from 6 European countries.

In line with the aims of the project, this current research study looked at the effectiveness and accuracy of combined blood vitamin E biomarkers and neuroimaging measurements in identifying and differentiating AD and MCI subjects from CTL subjects. Values of vitamin E and MRI were also used to predict conversion from MCI to AD at follow-up after 1 year.

Consistent with previous study published in Neurobiology of Aging, 2012, researchers found that AD and MCI patients had lower blood plasma levels of different vitamin E isomers, compared to CTL subjects. Both AD and MCI cases have characteristically raised markers of vitamin E oxidative/nitrosative damage. All four forms of tocotrienols and alpha-, gamma-tocopherols levels showed statistically significant association with AD cases compared to CTL. On the other hand, alpha-, delta-, gamma-tocotrienols and gamma-tocopherol levels were statistically significant in MCI subjects compared to CTL.

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The researchers also reported high accuracy (98.2%) in detecting AD subjects from CTL subjects using combined MRI and vitamin E measurements; and 90.7% for MCI from CTL subjects. Importantly, “this combination of measurements also identified 85% of individuals with MCI who converted to clinical AD at follow-up after 1 year.” the study stated. The researchers concluded that plasma levels of tocopherols and tocotrienols together with automated MRI measurements can help to differentiate AD and MCI in the elderly as well as to prospectively predict MCI conversion to AD.

“It is encouraging to find consistent and positive research results supporting the importance of full spectrum vitamin E (d-mixed tocotrienols + d-mixed tocopherols or E-Complete) in cognitive improvement. This study shows that alpha and gamma-tocotrienol, as well as gamma-tocopherol are the most important vitamin E forms in differentiating AD and MCI cases from controls,” says Mr. WH Leong, Vice President, Carotech Inc.

“NIH-funded in-vitro and in-vivo studies in the US have conclusively proven the protective effect of full spectrum palm tocotrienol/tocopherol complex (Tocomin SupraBio®) in neuroprotection. This European study adds further to the evidence that increased levels of full spectrum vitamin E in the plasma is beneficial for improvement of cognitive functions especially in elderly,” adds Mr. Leong.


Journal of Internal Medicine, DOI: 10.1111/joim.12037.

“Classification and prediction of clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease based on MRI and plasma measures of α-/γ-tocotrienols and γ-tocopherol”

Authors: Mangialasche F, Westman E, Kivipelto M, Muehlboeck JS, Cecchetti R, Baglioni M, Tarducci R, Gobbi G, Floridi P, Soininen H, Kłoszewska I, Tsolaki M, Vellas B, Spenger C, Lovestone S, Wahlund LO, Simmons A, Mecocci P; The AddNeuroMed consortium.



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