Pharmacokinetics of vitamin E, γ-oryzanol, and ferulic acid in healthy humans after the ingestion of a rice bran-enriched porridge prepared with water or with milk

  • Laura A. Calvo-Castro
  • Nadine Sus
  • Christina Schiborr
  • Anja Bosy-Westphal
  • Maria Luisa Duran
  • Doris Fesenmeyer
  • Gerhard Fesenmeyer
  • Jan Frank
Original Contribution



In this study, we investigated the absorption and excretion kinetics of antioxidant dietary phytochemicals (vitamin E, γ-oryzanol, and ferulic acid) in healthy humans after the ingestion of an oatmeal porridge supplemented with rice bran extract (RBE) prepared with water or with whole milk, and we compared it with the intake of an equivalent dose of the rice bran content, in the form of RBE oil.


Twelve healthy volunteers (6 men and 6 women) orally ingested RBE oil (2 g) or RBE-enriched porridge (35 g, including 2-g RBE) with water or with milk, in a three-armed, crossover trial. Blood and urine samples were collected at baseline and up to 24 h after intake. Vitamin E (α-, β-, γ-, and δ-tocopherols and tocotrienols), ferulic acid (FA), and γ-oryzanol (ORY) were quantified by HPLC.


The ingestion of RBE-fortified oatmeal porridge and RBE oil significantly increased FA concentrations in plasma, showing faster absorption and higher maximum plasma concentrations after the intake of the porridges, irrespective of the addition of water or milk. At least part of the FA could have been hydrolyzed from ORY. However, plasma vitamin E concentrations did not increase from baseline, and no intact FA esters (cycloartenyl ferulate, 24-methylenecycloartanyl ferulate, campesteryl ferulate, and β-sitosteryl ferulate) were detected in plasma or urine with any of the meal treatments.


Rice bran extract-enriched porridge and, to a lesser extent, RBE oil, provide relevant sources of bioaccessible and bioavailable ferulic acid, and could be further developed into functional foods with health potential.


Ferulic acid Gamma-oryzanol Human study Pharmacokinetics Vitamin E 



This project was funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) [Grant number KF3207801CS3]. We thank the volunteers for their valuable time and kind disposition to participate in this study. We also thank Svenja Herzog and Jana Distler for their help with sample processing.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethical approval

The trial (F-2015-082) was reviewed and approved by the ethics committee of the State Medical Society of Baden-Württemberg (Germany) and it was registered at as NCT02944084. The protocol was in conformance with the Declaration of Helsinki.

Informed consent

All participants signed a written informed consent before inclusion.

Conflict of interest

Doris Fesenmeyer and Gerhard Fesenmeyer are managing directors of FB Food, the company which produced and kindly provided the porridge for the study. Mr. and Mrs. Fesenmeyer did not participate in the clinical trial, and were not involved in data collection, analysis and interpretation. All the other authors have no conflict of interest to declare.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 16 KB)
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Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 17 KB)
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Supplementary material 3 (DOCX 19 KB)
394_2018_1770_MOESM4_ESM.docx (34 kb)
Supplementary material 4 (DOCX 33 KB)
394_2018_1770_MOESM5_ESM.pdf (56 kb)
Supplementary material 5 (PDF 56 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Biological Chemistry and NutritionUniversity of HohenheimStuttgartGermany
  2. 2.Escuela de BiologíaInstituto Tecnológico de Costa RicaCartagoCosta Rica
  3. 3.Institute of Nutritional MedicineUniversity of HohenheimStuttgartGermany
  4. 4.FB Food GmbHVillingen-SchwenningenGermany

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