Research highlight

Role for vitamin E in repairing cell membranes

Nature Communications

December 21, 2011

Treatment of cultured muscle cells with vitamin E repairs membranes damaged by oxidative stress, reports a study published in Nature Communications this week. These findings have implications for the repair of cell membranes in the laboratory. By measuring dye uptake in muscle cells and in an in vitro model of diabetes, Paul McNeil and colleagues, showed that the common form of vitamin E - a-tocopherol — blocked the entry of the dye into cells suggesting that the vitamin modulated membrane repair. a-tocopherol also enhanced the repair of cells exposed to mechanical and oxidative stress. Their findings suggest that diets lacking vitamin E could result in the inability to repair cell membrane damage.

doi: 10.1038/ncomms1594

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