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Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 6158436, 7 pages
Research Article

Serum Metabolomic Response to Long-Term Supplementation with all-rac-α-Tocopheryl Acetate in a Randomized Controlled Trial

1Department of Epidemiology, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
2Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, NIH, Nutritional Epidemiology Branch, Bethesda, MD, USA
3Metabolon, Inc., Durham, NC, USA
4Department of Chronic Disease Prevention, National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki, Finland
5Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, NIH, Biostatistics Branch, Bethesda, MD, USA

Received 18 May 2016; Accepted 28 August 2016

Academic Editor: H. K. Biesalski

Copyright © 2016 Alison M. Mondul et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. The Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention (ATBC) Study, a randomized controlled cancer prevention trial, showed a 32% reduction in prostate cancer incidence in response to vitamin E supplementation. Two other trials were not confirmatory, however. Objective. We compared the change in serum metabolome of the ATBC Study participants randomized to receive vitamin E to those who were not by randomly selecting 50 men from each of the intervention groups (50 mg/day all-rac-α-tocopheryl acetate (ATA), 20 mg/day -carotene, both, placebo). Methods. Metabolomic profiling was conducted on baseline and follow-up fasting serum (Metabolon, Inc.). Results. After correction for multiple comparisons, five metabolites were statistically significantly altered (β is the change in metabolite level expressed as number of standard deviations on the log scale): α-CEHC sulfate (, ), α-CEHC glucuronide (, ), α-tocopherol (, ), γ-tocopherol (, ), and β-tocopherol (, ). Glutarylcarnitine, beta-alanine, ornithine, and N6-acetyllysine were also decreased by ATA supplementation (β range 0.40 to −0.36), but not statistically significantly. Conclusions. Comparison of the observed metabolite alterations resulting from ATA supplementation to those in other vitamin E trials of different populations, dosages, or formulations may shed light on the apparently discordant vitamin E-prostate cancer risk findings.