Vitamin E chemistry, biological activity and benefits on the skin

  • R. CassanoEmail author
Part of the Human Health Handbooks no. 1 book series (HHH, volume 2)


Vitamin E is the most important fat-soluble antioxidant especially applied in the animal nutrition. Due to its anti-inflammatory effects on the skin it is contained in many cosmetic products. In fact, if topically applied, vitamin E deactives unstable free radicals providing one of its electrons to the electron deficient free radical making it more stable. As a result, it protects the skin from deleterious effects due to its exposure to exogenous toxic agents such as pollulants, chemicals and sun rays, preventing the propagation of free-radicals. Although, mainly acting as an antioxidant, vitamin E can also exert a pro-oxidant activity. Vitamin E also regulates the functions of vitamin A in the body. This is fundamental because vitamin A itself is a dominant vitamin for skin care.


tocopherol tocotrienol antioxidant fatty acid pro-oxidation health care 



Protonic nuclear magnetic resonance


Carbon nuclear magnetic resonance


Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy


Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry


International unit


Low-density lipoprotein


Protein kinase C


Polyunsaturated fatty acid


Recommended daily allowance


Reactive oxygen species




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Copyright information

© Wageningen Academic Publishers 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pharmaceutical SciencesUniversity of CalabriaArcavacata diItaly

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