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Effect of α-tocopherol on glucose uptake and contractility in rat skeletal muscle

Mohamed A. Haidara, Ibrahim M. Ibrahim, Ali S. Al-Tuwaijri, Sitelbanat A. Awadalla, Hanna Yaseen

Med Sci Monit 2003; 9(5): BR174-177

ID: 11051

Available online: 2003-05-22

Published: 2003-05-22

Background: Free radicals and associated oxidative stress play an important role in the causation and subsequent complications of diabetes mellitus. Type I diabetes can be induced in experimental animals by administration of streptozotocin which causes selective destruction of B islet cells, probably by a free radical mediated mechanism. The objective of this study was to determine
the effect of administration of α-tocopherol two weeks before and two weeks after streptozotocin injection on contractility and glucose uptake of rat hemidiaphragm.
Material/Methods: Male Wistar rats were used for this experiment. In the first phase, all the rats received an ordinary diet, while some were given α-tocopherol; in the second phase, diabetes was induced
with streptozotocin, while the animals in the experimental group were given α-tocopherol two weeks before and two weeks after diabetes induction.
Results: Streptozotocin decreased the height of the indirect contraction and the time for 50% decrease in height of contraction of indirect responses. At the same time, the glucose uptake of the diaphragm muscle was also decreased. Administration of α-tocopherol (600 mg/kg–1, im) ameliorated the inhibitory effect of diabetes on the skeletal muscle and reversed the decrease in time (s) of the 50% decrease in the height of contraction of the indirect responses of the rat hemidiaphragm preparation. Additionally, α-tocopherol increased glucose uptake by diaphragm muscles towards control level.
Conclusions: α-Tocopherol supplementation probably protected against the inhibitory effect of oxidative stress observed in diabetes mellitus and contributed to improved contractility.

Keywords: Glucose - metabolism