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Vitamin E shows possible promise in easing chronic inflammation
Date:12/4/2008

With up to half of a person's body mass consisting of skeletal muscle, chronic inflammation of those muscles which include those found in the limbs can result in significant physical impairment.

According to University of Illinois kinesiology and community health professor Kimberly Huey, past research has demonstrated that the antioxidant properties of Vitamin E may be associated with reduced expression of certain pro-inflammatory cytokines, in vitro, in various types of cells. Cytokines are regulatory proteins that function as intercellular communicators that assist the immune system in generating a response.

To consider whether the administration of Vitamin E, in vivo, might have similar effects on skeletal and cardiac muscle, Huey and a team of Illinois researchers put Vitamin E to the test in mice. The team included study designer Rodney Johnson, a U. of I. professor of animal sciences, whose previous work has suggested a possible link, in mice, between short-term Vitamin E supplementation and reduced inflammation in the brain.

The study represents the first time researchers have looked at in vivo effects of Vitamin E administration on local inflammatory responses in skeletal and cardiac muscle.

In this study, the researchers investigated the effects of prior administration of Vitamin E in mice that were then injected with a low dose of E. coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to induce acute systemic inflammation. The effects were compared with those found in placebo control groups.

The research team examined the impact the Vitamin E or placebo treatment had on the mRNA and protein levels of three cytokines interleukin (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) and IL-1beta.

"The mice were administered Vitamin E for three days prior to giving them what amounts to a minor systemic bacterial infection," Huey said. "One thing we did in addition to (looking at) the cytokines was to look, in the mu
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Contact: Melissa Mitchell
melissa@illinois.edu
217-333-5491
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Source:Eurekalert

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