Associations of serum retinol, α-tocopherol, and γ-tocopherol with biomarkers among healthy Japanese men

Yu Zou, Da Hong Wang, Noriko Sakano, Yoshie Sato, Suketaka Iwanaga, Kazuhisa Taketa, Masayuki Kubo, Kei Takemoto, Chie Masatomi, Kiyomi Inoue, Keiki Ogino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Retinol, α-tocopherol, and γ-tocopherol are fat-soluble vitamins acting as antioxidants via the prevention of lipid oxidation. Little is known about circulatory levels in healthy individuals. The present cross-sectional study aimed at elucidating the relationship between these antioxidants and clinical biomarkers in 206 male (median age 41 years, range 23-67) employees from companies located in the Okayama Prefecture, Japan. Subjects younger than 40 years (n = 94) showed a positive association of the frequency of alcohol consumption with the circulating retinol (β = 0.344, p = 0.001) and γ-tocopherol levels (β = 0.219, p = 0.041), and an inverse association of fast insulin with serum retinol (β = &-*0.301, p = 0.009). In participants older than 40 years (n = 112) we found that an inverse association of HOMA-R with serum retinol (β = &-*0.262, p = 0.021), α-tocopherol (β = &-*0.236, p = 0.035), and γ-tocopherol levels (β = &-*0.224, p = 0.052); and cigarette smoking was inversely associated with the levels of serum α-tocopherol (β = &-*0.286, p = 0.008) and γ-tocopherol (β = &-*0.229, p = 0.040). We further found negative relationships between serum ferritin and the retinol (β = &-*0.211, p = 0.032) and α-tocopherol levels (β = &-*0.223, p = 0.022) in men over 40 years of age. The present study suggests that the circulatory levels of antioxidant vitamins may modulate the action of insulin and that higher levels of iron might decrease the levels of antioxidant vitamins in the blood.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1647-1660
Number of pages14
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 30 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Alcohol consumption
  • Homa-r
  • Serum ferritin
  • Serum retinol
  • Serum α-tocopherol
  • Serum γ-tocopherol
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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