Vitamin E plasma kinetics in swine show low bioavailability and short half-life of -a-tocopheryl acetate.

Journal of animal science

PubMedID: 27898857

van Kempen TA, Reijersen MH, de Bruijn C, De Smet S, Michiels J, Traber MG, Lauridsen C. Vitamin E plasma kinetics in swine show low bioavailability and short half-life of -a-tocopheryl acetate. J Anim Sci. 2016;94(10):4188-4195.
Vitamin E is important for animal production because of its effects on health and product quality, but the amount and form required remains controversial. Our objective was to quantify the absolute bioavailability of oral -a-tocopheryl acetate (a-TAc) in swine (22 ± 1 kg and 8 wk old, fitted with jugular catheters) adapted to a diet supplemented with 75 mg/kg -a-TAc; 75 mg/kg was chosen because this level represents the nonweighted average inclusion level in piglet diets across Western key swine-producing countries. For this, a 350-g test meal (6% fat) was supplied at time 0 containing 75 mg deuterated (D9) -a-TAc to 9 animals, and 8 animals received an intravenous () dose containing deuterated (D6) RRR-a-tocopherol (a-T) at one-eighth the oral dose and a test meal without supplemental vitamin E. Plasma samples (12 to 13 per animal) were obtained at incremental intervals over 75 h for analysis of deuterated a-T using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Surprisingly, the i. v. dose rapidly disappeared from plasma and then reappeared. The half-life for this first peak was only 1. 7 ± 0. 3 min. The second peak had an appearance rate (Ka) of 0. 10 ± 0. 06 d and a half-life of 5. 9 ± 1. 2 h. Oral dosing resulted, after a lag of 56 min, in a Ka of 0. 91 ± 0. 21 d and a half-life of 2. 6 ± 0. 8 h. The bioavailability for oral a-TAc was 12. 5%, whereas the area under the curve was only 5. 4%. This low bioavailability, small area under the curve, and short half-life are likely because of various factors, that is, the use of only 6% fat in the diet, the use of the acetate ester and , and the high dose relative to requirements. In conclusion, i. v. dosed vitamin E shows both a rapid and a very slow pool, whereas orally dosed vitamin E shows a single slow pool. The oral material has a very short half-live (44% of i. v. or 2. 6 h), low bioavailability (12. 5%), and a very small area under the curve (5. 4%), bringing into question the efficacy of typical doses of vitamin E in swine diets for alleviating oxidative stress.