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1 page/≈275 words
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Health, Medicine, Nursing
Research Paper
English (U.K.)
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Understanding the Health Benefit Given by Vitamin E (Research Paper Sample)


The purpose of this paper has been to examine the use of Vitamin E in preventing cancer and stopping the spread of cancer cells. The research that was reviewed showed that both gamma-tocopherol and tocotrienols have been effective at inducing apoptosis in cancer cells. The research involving the use of gamma-tocopherol was found to be effective at inducing apoptosis in colon cancer cells regardless of their genetic structures. Even more, gamma-tocopherol has been found to indicate the death receptor in mRNA. However, the research suggests that tocotrienols may be more effective at inducing apoptosis in cancer cells because of a greater accumulation of this type of vitamin E at the cellular level. Furthermore, research has shown that in human trials of the treatment of breast cancer, tocotrienols can be used along with Tamoxifen to successfully stop the proliferation of breast cancer cells even after patients develop Tamoxifen resistance. Unfortunately, most of the research that has been conducted using gamma-tocopherols and tocotrienols have been conducted in the laboratory. More research involving human trials is needed in order to determine if the results achieved in the laboratory can be recreated in humans. Even more, care must be taken to inform the public that simply taking large doses of vitamin E is not likely to result in the successful prevention of treatment of cancer. This is due to the fact that most vitamin E that is consumed in dietary form is alpha-tocopherol, which has been shown to be ineffective at inducing apoptosis, and may even cause cancer cell proliferation.


Vitamin E is one of the most researched compounds in the medical community because of what is believed to be its ability to prevent and effectively treat cancer. There are eight forms of vitamin E, of which gamma-tocopherol and tocotriencols have shown the greatest promises in effectively treating and preventing cancer. However, simply taking large amounts of vitamin E is not likely to be effective at preventing and reducing the risk of cancer. Research has shown Gamma-tocopherol has been effective at treating both breast cancer cells and colon cancer cells because it induces apoptosis in the cancerous cells without harming non-cancerous cells. In comparison, Tocotriencols may be even more effective than gamma-tocopherol because of greater cellular accumulation. This is particularly true in the treatment of breast cancer because of estrogen receptor signaling. For both types of vitamin E, additional research is needed that involves human trials in order to determine if the outcomes that have been achieved largely in laboratory experiments can be recreated within the human body.

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