, Volume 13, Issue 3, pp 241-247

Transport of alpha-tocopherol in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) during vitellogenesis

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The transport of α-tocopherol was studied during vitellogenesis in Atlantic salmon that were fed diets with two levels of α-tocopherol. α-Tocopherol levels were measured in the flesh, liver, ovary and serum, and in the serum the α-tocopherol levels in the very low density lipoprotein (VLDL), low density lipoprotein (LDL), high density lipoprotein (HDL) and very high density lipoprotein (VHDL or vitellogenin) were also measured.

Atlantic salmon store α-tocopherol mainly in their flesh because the muscle mass comprises 50% or more of live weight. During vitellogenesis the α-tocopherol content declined to about 10% of the level prior to maturation. The relative range of level of α-tocopherol in the lipoproteins was: HDL> LDL> VLDL> VHDL, irrespective of dietary levels of α-tocopherol.

From the recent knowledge on lipid transport during vitellogenesis and the present data, we hypothesize that α-tocopherol is transported from peripheral tissues to liver by HDL and further transported from liver to ovary by LDL. Vitellogenin appears to play a minor role in the transportation of vitamin E to the ovary.