Tocotrienols Prevent Bone Loss and Weight Gain During Steroid Treatment
Long-term glucocorticoid treatment is associated with severe side effects, such as obesity and osteoporosis. A palm oil-derived vitamin E mixture had been shown previously to be protective against osteoporosis in rats given 120 microg/kg dexamethasone daily for 12 weeks. In this study we determined the effects of two isomers of vitamin E (i.e., palm oil-derived gamma-tocotrienol and the commercially available alpha-tocopherol, 60 mg/kg of body weight/day) on body composition and bone calcium content in adrenalectomized rats replaced with two doses of dexamethasone, 120 microg/kg and 240 microg/kg daily. Treatment period was 8 weeks. gamma-Tocotrienol (60 mg/kg of body weight/day) was found to reduce body fat mass and increase the fourth lumbar vertebra bone calcium content in these rats, while alpha-tocopherol (60 mg/kg of body weight/day) was ineffective. Therefore, in conclusion, palm oil-derived gamma-tocotrienol has the potential to be utilized as a prophylactic agent in prevention of the side effects of long-term glucocorticoid use.
Ima-Nirwana S, Suhaniza S. Effects of tocopherols and tocotrienols on body composition and bone calcium content in adrenalectomized rats replaced with dexamethasone. J Med Food. 2004 April Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.