Method: a-Tocopherol and g-tocopherol are metabolized into 2,5,7,8-tetramethyl-2-(20-carboxyethyl)-6-hydroxychroman (a- CEHC) and 2,7,8-trimethyl-2-(20-carboxyethyl)-6-hydroxychroman (g-CEHC), respectively. We analyzed a- and g-CEHC con- centrations in human serum and urine by high-performance liquid chromatography during administration of a-tocopherol. Fourteen healthy adult male volunteers received 1200 IU per day of -a-tocopherol for 28 days. Blood and urine samples were obtained on days 0, 14, 28, and 56. Results: During a-tocopherol administration, the plasma g-tocopherol concentration decreased significantly, but there was marked elevation of the a-tocopherol concentration. Increased concentration of a-CEHC and g-CEHC in both serum and urine indicated the acceleration of vitamin E metabolism. Conclusion: High-dose administration of a-tocopherol caused an increase of g-tocopherol metabolism, which might have caused a decrease of the plasma g-tocopherol concentration.
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