α-tocopherol and its derivatives have been shown to be effective in reducing cerebral ischemia-induced brain damage. However, the effects of other vitamin E isoforms have not been characterized. In the present study, we investigated the effects of six different isoforms of vitamin E on the ischemic brain damage in the mice middle cerebral artery (MCA) occlusion model. All vitamin E isoforms were injected i.v., twice, immediately before and 3 h after the occlusion. α-tocopherol (2 mM), α-tocotrienol (0.2 and 2 mM) and γ-tocopherol (0.2 and 2 mM) significantly decreased the size of the cerebral infarcts 1 day after the MCA occlusion, while γ-tocotrienol, δ-tocopherol and δ-tocotrienol showed no effect on the cerebral infarcts. These results suggest that α-tocotrienol and γ-tocopherol are potent and effective agents for preventing cerebral infarction induced by MCA occlusion.
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