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Serum Vitamin E (α-Tocopherol) Estimation: A Potential Biomarker of Antioxidant Status Evaluation on Heavy Metal Toxicities

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The toxicity of heavy metal varied on the absorption, concentration, and determination of the toxicant at its site of action. The end product of toxicant reacts with the endogenous target molecule like receptors, enzymes, DNA, protein, or lipid and seriously alters the biological micro environment, resulting structural and functional changes due to toxic damage. Heavy metals intoxication leads to increased lipid peroxidation with alterations in antioxidant defenses. Vitamin E (α-tocopherol) is a fat soluble antioxidant that inhibits the production of reactive oxygen species formed when fat undergoes oxidation. Vitamin E is linked to regulate various diseases like cancer, atherosclerosis, hypertension, male infertility etc. This review discussed on significance of vitamin E (α-tocopherol) as a biomarker against metal toxicities including a modified methodology developed by author and his group to evaluate serum vitamin E concentration. Biomarkers can provide direct measures of actual effects of chemicals upon living organisms in the field, there by overcoming large areas of uncertainty implicit in normal risk assessment. It may be suggested that future studies should screen on individual exposed to heavy metal based on their antioxidant status in blood like serum vitamin E (α-tocopherol) level as a marker of oxidative or inflammatory risk. Researchers should confirm whether markers of oxidative risk are lowered, in addition to monitoring direct toxicity outcomes. The review also focuses on recent patent of α-tocopherol as biomarker.
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Keywords: ANTIOXIDANT VITAMINS; Antioxidants; DNA damage; ROS; biomarkers; heavy metal toxicities; lipid peroxidation; modified method; reactive nitrogen species; α-tocopherol

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2013

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  • Recent Patents on Biomarkers publishes review and research articles, and guest edited thematic issues on important recent patents on biomarkers. The coverage includes novel biomarkers in basic, medical, environmental, and pharmaceutical research. A selection of important and recent patents on biomarkers is also included in the journal. The journal is essential reading for all researchers involved in biomarker research and discovery. The journal also covers recent research (where patents have been registered) in fast emerging patent biomarker applications; discovery and validation are covered for drug discovery, clinical development and molecular diagnostics.
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