Researchers at Oregon State University have discovered how vitamin E deficiency may cause neurological damage by interrupting a supply line of specific nutrients and robbing the brain of the “building blocks” it needs to maintain neuronal health.
The findings – in work done with zebrafish – were just published in the Journal of Lipid Research. The work was supported by the National Institutes of Health.
The research showed that zebrafish fed a diet deficient in vitamin E throughout their life had about 30 percent lower levels of DHA-PC, which is a part of the cellular membrane in every brain cell, or neuron. Other recent studies have also concluded that low levels of DHA-PC in the blood plasma of humans is a biomarker than can predict a higher risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Just as important, the new research studied the level of compounds called “lyso PLs,” which are nutrients needed for getting DHA into the brain, and serve as building blocks that aid in membrane repair. It showed the lyso PLs are an average of 60 percent lower in fish with a vitamin E deficient diet.
The study this story is based on is available online: http://bit.ly/1DtAIyU