Send to

Choose Destination
J Nutr. 1993 Oct;123(10):1649-55.

Vitamin E is protective against iron toxicity and iron-induced hepatic vitamin E depletion in mice.

Author information

Department of Veterinary Physiological Sciences, Western College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.


This study examined the effect of excess dietary iron on liver function, iron and vitamin E status and the protective activity of vitamin E. Consumption of excess dietary iron (3000, 5000, 8000 mg iron/kg/diet) compared with consumption of the control diet (120 mg iron/kg diet) by weanling male CD-1 mice for 7 wk resulted in accumulation of iron in liver, increased relative liver weights and a reduction in hepatic vitamin E stores. The concentration of vitamin E in the liver was negatively correlated with dietary iron concentration (r = 0.998). Weekly administration of vitamin E (20 mg/kg, subcutaneously) prevented iron-induced liver damage without altering hepatic iron stores. Pretreatment of adult male CD-1 mice with a single subcutaneous dose of vitamin E (20 mg/kg body wt) 24 h prior to a lethal dose of iron (60 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) resulted in 100% protection. A similar dose of vitamin E given 5, 30 or 60 min (intravenously) after iron intoxication enhanced survival to 90, 70 and 80%, respectively, compared with the untreated control group. Vitamin E treatment 30 min after iron intoxication reduced mortality by 75% compared with intravenous treatment with 10 mg/kg of deferoxamine (Desferal). Data in this study indicate that vitamin E may be a useful antidote for iron toxicoses and that iron-induced depletion of vitamin E may play a role in the pathogenesis of iron toxicity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center