A pinboard by
Kok-Yong Chin

Junior researcher, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia


Can tocotrienol rescue your bone?

Buserelin is a hormonal agent commonly used by patients with prostate cancer. It stops the production of testosterone, thus retarding the progression of cancer. However, bone loss is a major side effect affecting buserelin users. Bone loss will increase the risk of fragility fracture of the patients. Calcium supplementation is commonly used as a prophylactic agent to prevent bone loss among buserelin users but its effects are limited. We proposed the use of tocotrienol, a type of vitamin E, to prevent bone loss and fractures among buserelin users. It has been shown to prevent bone loss due to menopause. Before the bone protective effects of tocotrienol can be tested in human, we need to validate its efficacy in animal model first. In our study, we established a model of bone loss due to buserelin administration in male rats. Then, we treated these rats with tocotrienol to assess its protective effects on the skeletal system. We assessed three domains of bone quality, i.e. bone microstructure (geometry), mineral properties (calcium content) and bone strength (ability to withstand mechanical stress. We hope to offer a better alternative, i.e. tocotrienol, to patients using buserelin to prevent osteoporotic fracture.


Vitamin E as an Antiosteoporotic Agent via Receptor Activator of Nuclear Factor Kappa-B Ligand Signaling Disruption: Current Evidence and Other Potential Research Areas.

Abstract: Osteoporosis is a growing healthcare burden that affects the quality of life in the aging population. Vitamin E is a potential prophylactic agent that can impede the progression of osteoporosis. Various in vivo studies demonstrated the antiosteoporotic potential of vitamin E, but evidence on its molecular mechanism of action is limited. A few in vitro studies showed that various forms of vitamin E can affect the receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand (RANKL) signaling and their molecular targets, thus preventing the formation of osteoclasts in the early stage of osteoclastogenesis. Various studies have also shown that the effects of the different isoforms of vitamin E differ. The effects of single isoforms and combinations of isoforms on bone metabolism are also different. Vitamin E may affect bone metabolism by disruption of free radical-mediated RANKL signaling, by its oestrogen-like effects, by its effects on the molecular mechanism of bone formation, by the anti-inflammatory effects of its long-chain metabolites on bone cells, and by the inhibition of 3-hydroxyl-3-methyglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA). In conclusion, the vitamin E isoforms have enormous potential to be used as prophylactic and therapeutic agents in preventing osteoporosis, but further studies should be conducted to elucidate their mechanisms of action.

Pub.: 25 Aug '12, Pinned: 17 Aug '17

Effects of annatto-derived tocotrienol supplementation on osteoporosis induced by testosterone deficiency in rats.

Abstract: Previous animal models have demonstrated that tocotrienol is a potential treatment for postmenopausal osteoporosis. This study evaluated the antiosteoporotic effects of annatto-derived tocotrienol (AnTT) using a testosterone-deficient osteoporotic rat model.Forty rats were divided randomly into baseline, sham, orchidectomized, AnTT, and testosterone groups. The baseline group was euthanized without undergoing any surgical treatment or intervention. The remaining groups underwent orchidectomy, with the exception of the sham group. AnTT 60 mg/kg/day was given orally to the AnTT group, while the testosterone group received testosterone enanthate 7 mg/kg per week intramuscularly for 8 weeks. Structural changes in trabecular bone at the proximal tibia were examined using microcomputed tomography. Structural and dynamic changes at the distal femur were examined using histomorphometric methods. Serum osteocalcin and C-terminal of type 1 collagen crosslinks were measured. Bone-related gene expression in the distal femur was examined.There were significant degenerative changes in structural indices in the orchidectomized group (P<0.05), but no significant changes in dynamic indices, bone remodeling markers, or gene expression (P>0.05) when compared with the sham group. The AnTT group showed significant improvement in structural indices at the femur (P<0.05) and significantly increased expression of bone formation genes (P<0.05). Testosterone was more effective than AnTT in preventing degeneration of bone structural indices in the femur and tibia (P<0.05).AnTT supplementation improves bone health in testosterone-deficient rats by enhancing bone formation. Its potential should be evaluated further by varying the dosage and treatment duration.

Pub.: 15 Aug '14, Pinned: 17 Aug '17

Annatto tocotrienol improves indices of bone static histomorphometry in osteoporosis due to testosterone deficiency in rats.

Abstract: This study aimed to evaluate the effects of annatto tocotrienol on indices of bone static histomorphometry in orchidectomized rats. Forty male rats were randomized into baseline (BL), sham (SH), orchidectomized (ORX), annatto tocotrienol-treated (AnTT) and testosterone enanthate-treated (TE) groups. The BL group was sacrificed upon receipt. All rats except the SH group underwent bilateral orchidectomy. Annatto tocotrienol at 60 mg/kg body weight was administered orally daily to the AnTT group for eight weeks. Testosterone enanthate at 7 mg/kg body weight was administered intramuscularly once weekly for eight weeks to the TE group. The rat femurs were collected for static histomorphometric analysis upon necropsy. The results indicated that the ORX group had significantly higher osteoclast surface and eroded surface, and significantly lower osteoblast surface, osteoid surface and osteoid volume compared to the SH group (p < 0.05). Annatto tocotrienol and testosterone enanthate intervention prevented all these changes (p < 0.05). The efficacy of annatto tocotrienol was on par with testosterone enanthate. In conclusion, annatto tocotrienol at 60 mg/kg can prevent the imbalance in bone remodeling caused by increased osteoclast and bone resorption, and decreased osteoblast and bone formation. This serves as a basis for the application of annatto tocotrienol in hypogonadal men as an antiosteoporotic agent.

Pub.: 13 Nov '14, Pinned: 17 Aug '17

The Effects of Annatto Tocotrienol on Bone Biomechanical Strength and Bone Calcium Content in an Animal Model of Osteoporosis Due to Testosterone Deficiency.

Abstract: Osteoporosis reduces the skeletal strength and increases the risk for fracture. It is an underdiagnosed disease in men. Annatto tocotrienol has been shown to improve bone structural indices and increase expression of bone formation genes in orchidectomized rats. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of annatto tocotrienol on biomechanical strength and calcium content of the bone in orchidectomized rats. Thirty three-month-old male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to five groups. The baseline control (BC) group was sacrificed at the onset of the study. The sham-operated group (SHAM) received olive oil (the vehicle of tocotrienol) orally daily and peanut oil (the vehicle of testosterone) intramuscularly weekly. The remaining rats were orchidectomized and treated with three different regimens, i.e., (1) daily oral olive oil plus weekly intramuscular peanut oil injection; (2) daily oral annatto tocotrienol at 60 mg/kg plus weekly intramuscular peanut oil injection; (3) daily oral olive oil plus weekly intramuscular testosterone enanthate injection at 7 mg/kg. Blood, femur and tibia of the rats were harvested at the end of the two-month treatment period for the evaluation of serum total calcium and inorganic phosphate levels, bone biomechanical strength test and bone calcium content. Annatto-tocotrienol treatment improved serum calcium level and tibial calcium content (p < 0.05) but it did not affect femoral biomechanical strength (p > 0.05). In conclusion, annatto-tocotrienol at 60 mg/kg augments bone calcium level by preventing calcium mobilization into the circulation. A longer treatment period is needed for annatto tocotrienol to exert its effects on bone strength.

Pub.: 17 Dec '16, Pinned: 17 Aug '17

The Effects of Tocotrienol and Lovastatin Co-Supplementation on Bone Dynamic Histomorphometry and Bone Morphogenetic Protein-2 Expression in Rats with Estrogen Deficiency.

Abstract: Both tocotrienol and statins are suppressors of the mevalonate pathway. Supplementation of tocotrienol among statin users could potentially protect them against osteoporosis. This study aimed to compare the effects of tocotrienol and lovastatin co-supplementation with individual treatments on bone dynamic histomorphometric indices and bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) gene expression in ovariectomized rats. Forty-eight female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomized equally into six groups. The baseline was sacrificed upon receipt. All other groups were ovariectomized, except for the sham group. The ovariectomized groups were administered orally daily with (1) lovastatin 11 mg/kg/day alone; (2) tocotrienol derived from annatto bean (annatto tocotrienol) 60 mg/kg/day alone; (3) lovastatin 11 mg/kg/day, and annatto tocotrienol 60 mg/kg/day. The sham and ovariectomized control groups were treated with equal volume of vehicle. After eight weeks of treatment, the rats were sacrificed. Their bones were harvested for bone dynamic histomorphometry and BMP-2 gene expression. Rats supplemented with annatto tocotrienol and lovastatin concurrently demonstrated significantly lower single-labeled surface, but increased double-labeled surface, mineralizing surface, mineral apposition rate and bone formation rate compared to individual treatments (p < 0.05). There was a parallel increase in BMP-2 gene expression in the rats receiving combined treatment (p < 0.05). The combination of annatto tocotrienol and lovastatin exerted either additively or synergistically on selected bone parameters. In conclusion, tocotrienol can augment the bone formation and mineralization in rats receiving low-dose statins. Supplementation of tocotrienol in statin users can potentially protect them from osteoporosis.

Pub.: 18 Feb '17, Pinned: 17 Aug '17