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Journal of Animal Science Abstract - Animal Nutrition

Expression of α-tocopherol–associated genes and α-tocopherol accumulation in Japanese Black (Wagyu) calves with and without α-tocopherol supplementation1


This article in JAS

  1. Vol. 93 No. 8, p. 4048-4057
    Received: Mar 15, 2015
    Accepted: June 09, 2015
    Published: August 3, 2015

    2 Corresponding author(s):

  1. S. Haga **†,
  2. M. Nakano*,
  3. H. Ishizaki*,
  4. S. G. Roh and
  5. K. Katoh
  1. * Grassland Management Research Division, NARO Institute of Livestock and Grassland Science, 768, Senbonmatsu, Nasushiobara, Tochigi, 329-2793, Japan
     Laboratory of Animal Physiology, Graduate School of Agriculture Science, Tohoku University, 1-1, Amamiya-machi, Tsutsumidori, Aoba-ku, Sendai, Miyagi, 981-8555, Japan


The aim of the study was to clarify 1) the distribution of 6 α-tocopherol (α-Toc)–associated gene expressions in 20 major tissues, including metabolic, reproductive, endocrine, immune, and digestive and absorptive tissues, in relation to α-Toc status and 2) the change in expression patterns of the genes induced when α-Toc was orally administered to Japanese Black (JB) calves. This study examined weaned male JB calves (n = 10), of which 5 calves were orally administered α-Toc for 2 wk (30 IU·kg–1 BW·d–1; TOC group). The others did not receive the α-Toc supplement and were the control (CONT) group. The 20 tissues and venous blood (serum) were sampled on the final day. In both groups, the mean mRNA expression levels for α-Toc transfer protein, afamin (AFM), ATP-binding cassette transporter A1, and tocopherol-associated protein were greatest in the liver (P < 0.05), whereas scavenger receptor class B, Type I (SR-BI) mRNA was greatest in the adrenal gland (P < 0.05). The gene for cytochrome P450 family 4, subfamily F, polypeptide 2 was most highly expressed in the liver, testes, and adrenal gland. The α-Toc content was greatest (P < 0.05) in the testes of the 20 sampled tissues in the CONT group. However, the levels in the testes and jejunum were similar and greater (P < 0.05) than the levels in the other 18 tissues in the TOC group. The mean increase in α-Toc levels after oral α-Toc administration (mean α-Toc content for the TOC group divided by the CONT group content) were greater (P < 0.05) in the jejunum (40.7-fold) and duodenum and liver (26.3- and 23.1-fold) than in the serum (7.8-fold). In the liver, α-Toc administration significantly increased (P < 0.05) the AFM and SR-BI mRNA expression levels. The results show that the liver may play an important role in the regulation of α-Toc disposition, but other peripheral tissues that accumulate large amounts of α-Toc could moderate the local α-Toc status and functions, as inferred from the high expressions of the α-Toc–associated genes in JB calves.

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