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J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2012;5(2):94-105. Epub 2012 Aug 8.

Vitamin E alters inflammatory gene expression in alcoholic chronic pancreatitis.

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Division of Nutrition, Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, Brazil.



To evaluate the effect of vitamin E supplementation on pancreatic gene expression of inflammatory markers in rats with alcoholic chronic pancreatitis.


Wistar rats were divided into 3 groups: control (1), alcoholic chronic pancreatitis without (2) and with (3) vitamin E supplementation. Pancreatitis was induced by a liquid diet containing ethanol, cyclosporin A and cerulein. α-tocopherol content in plasma and liver and pancreas histopathology were analyzed. Gene expression of inflammatory biomarkers was analyzed by the quantitative real-time PCR technique.


The animals that received vitamin E supplementation had higher α-tocopherol amounts in plasma and liver. The pancreas in Group 1 showed normal histology, whereas in Groups 2 and 3, mild to moderate tissue destruction foci and mononuclear cell infiltration were detected. Real-time PCR analysis showed an increased expression of all genes in Groups 2 and 3 compared to Group 1. Vitamin E supplementation decreased the transcript number of 5 genes (α-SMA, COX-2, IL-6, MIP-3α and TNF-α) and increased the transcript number of 1 gene (Pap).


Vitamin E supplementation had anti-inflammatory and beneficial effects on the pancreatic gene expression of some inflammatory biomarkers in rats with alcoholic chronic pancreatitis, confirming its participation in the inflammatory response mechanisms in the pancreas.

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