alpha-Tocopherol reduces lipopolysaccharide-induced peroxide radical formation and interleukin-6 secretion in primary murine microglia and in brain

J Neuroimmunol. 2004 Apr;149(1-2):101-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jneuroim.2003.12.017.


The purpose of this study was to determine if alpha-tocopherol-a reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging agent-inhibits LPS-induced oxidative stress and interleukin-6 (IL-6) production in murine microglia and brain. LPS increased intracellular peroxides and IL-6 in a dose-dependent fashion in primary microglia. The LPS-induced increase in ROS and IL-6 was reduced by pretreatment of alpha-tocopherol. Intraperitoneal injection (i.p.) of LPS induced lipid peroxidation and IL-6 in brain. Importantly, three daily injections (20 mg) of alpha-tocopherol increased brain alpha-tocopherol and decreased LPS-induced lipid peroxidation and IL-6 in brain. Taken together, these data indicate that alpha-tocopherol can mitigate inflammatory cytokine production in the brain.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / methods
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Interactions
  • Extracellular Space / drug effects
  • Flow Cytometry / methods
  • Interleukin-6 / blood
  • Interleukin-6 / metabolism*
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects*
  • Lipopolysaccharides / pharmacology*
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microglia / drug effects*
  • Microglia / metabolism
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • alpha-Tocopherol / pharmacology*


  • Antioxidants
  • Interleukin-6
  • Lipopolysaccharides
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • alpha-Tocopherol