Objective - To determine concentrations of α-tocopherol in serum and CSF of healthy horses following administration of supplemental vitamin E in feed. Animals - 10 healthy adult horses. Procedures - Horses were allocated to receive supplemental d-α-tocopherol (1,000 U/d [group A; n = 5] or 10,000 U/d [group B; 5]) in feed for 10 days. Blood samples were collected before (baseline), during, and at intervals for 10 days after discontinuation of vitamin E administration for assessment of serum α-tocopherol concentration. Cerebrospinal fluid samples were collected prior to and 24 hours after cessation of vitamin E administration. α-Tocopherol concentrations in serum and CSF samples were analyzed via high-performance liquid chromatography; changes in those values during the treatment period were compared between groups, and the relationship of serum and CSF α-tocopherol concentrations was evaluated. Results - In both groups, serum α-tocopherol concentration increased significantly from baseline during vitamin E administration; values in group B were significantly greater than those in group A during and after treatment. At the end of vitamin E administration, CSF α-tocopherol concentration was not significantly greater than the baseline value in either group; however, the increase in CSF concentration was significant when the group data were combined and analyzed. Serum and CSF α-tocopherol concentrations were significantly correlated at baseline for all horses, but were not strongly correlated after 10 days of vitamin E administration. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - In healthy horses, daily oral administration of supplemental vitamin E in feed resulted in increases in serum and CSF α-tocopherol concentrations.
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