The present study aims to examine the effects of a palm-oil-derived vitamin E mixture containing tocotrienol (approximately 70%) and tocopherol (approximately 30%) on plasma lipids and on the formation of atherosclerotic plaques in rabbits given a 2% cholesterol diet. Eighteen New Zealand White rabbits (2.2-2.8 kg) were divided into three groups; group 1 (control) was fed a normal diet, group 2 (AT) was fed a 2% cholesterol diet and group 3 (PV) was fed a 2% cholesterol diet with oral palm vitamin E (60 mg/kg body weight) given daily for 10 weeks. There were no differences in the total cholesterol and triacylglycerol levels between the AT and PV groups. The PV group had a significantly higher concentrations of HDL-c and a lower TC/HDL-c ratio compared to the AT group (P < 0.003). The aortic tissue content of cholesterol and atherosclerotic lesions were comparable in both the AT and PV groups. However, the PV group had a lower content of plasma and aortic tissue malondialdehyde (P < 0.005). Our findings suggest that despite a highly atherogenic diet, palm vitamin E improved some important plasma lipid parameters, reduced lipid peroxidation but did not have an effect on the atherosclerotic plaque formation.
The aim is to test the hypothesis whether the cholesterol loaded lysosomes are capable of mediating lysosomal membrane permeabilization (LMP) during aging and to study the efficacy of epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) in preserving the lysosomal membrane stability. Aged rats were fed with high cholesterol diet (HCD) and treated with EGCG orally. Serum and tissue lipid status, cholesterol levels in lysosomal fraction, activities of lysosomal enzymes in lysosomal, and cytosolic fractions were measured. Transmission electron microscopic studies (TEM), oil red "O" (ORO) staining, and immunohistochemical analysis of oxidized low density lipoprotein (OxLDL) were carried out. Significant increase in serum, tissue lipid profile, and lysosomal cholesterol levels were observed in aged HCD-fed rats with a concomitant decrease in high density lipoprotein (HDL) levels. We also observed a significant increase in lipid accumulation in hepatocytes of aged HCD-fed rats by TEM, ORO, and immunohistochemical staining. Upon treatment with EGCG to aged HCD-fed animals, we found augmented levels of HDL with a concomitant decrease in lysosomal cholesterol levels and other lipoproteins. TEM studies and immunohistochemistry of OxLDL also showed a marked reduction in lipid deposition of hepatocytes. Thus, EGCG has preserved the lysosomal membrane stability in HCD stressed aged rats. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY: The research article is focused mainly on the effect of EGCG and its capability on mitigating the release of lysosomal enzymes in aged animals fed with HCD. The study signifies the cellular function of the organelle lysosome following administration of aged rats with HCD, which would make the readers to understand the action of EGCG and the interrelationship of both cholesterol and activity of lysosomes when cholesterol is loaded.