Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid that is a primary structural component of the human brain, cerebral cortex, retina, and other key parts of the central nervous system. Maret G. Traber, from Oregon State University (Oregon, USA), and c0olleagues employed a zebrafish model to study the role of vitamin E on the brain. Animals fed a diet without vitamin E for 9 months had about 30% less DHA (as DHA-PC) – acomponent of brain cell membranes. As well, the vitamin E-deficient animals had higher levels of hydroxyl-DHA-PC – a compound that forms after exposure to free radicals. Vitamin E-deficient animals had lower levels of lysophospholipids – compounds that join with Vitamin E to carry DHA into the brain.
Jaewoo Choi, Scott W. Leonrd, Katherine Kasper, Melissa McDougall, Jan F. Stevens, Robert L. Tanguay, Maret G. Traber. “Novel function of vitamin E in regulation of zebrafish (Danio rerio) brain lysophospholipids discovered using lipidomics.” J Lipid Research, April 8, 2015.