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Effect of Vitamin A Deficiency on Retinol and Retinyl Esters Contents in Rat Brain

Author(s): Asma Arfaoui | Issad Nasri | Samira Boulbaroud | Ali Ouichou | Abdelhalim Mesfioui

Journal: Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences
ISSN 1028-8880

Volume: 12;
Issue: 13;
Start page: 939;
Date: 2009;
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Keywords: Retinol | retinyl esters | olfactory bulb | vitamin A deficiency | sex

In the present study, the pattern of vitamin A (retinol and retinyl esters) contents in discrete brain areas was investigated in Wistar rats (both sexes of 10-12 weeks old) fed on vitamin A deficient diet. The animals were placed on standard laboratory diet for the control animals and a vitamin A deficient diet for the experimental animals for 20 weeks. At the end of this period, brain retinol and retinyl esters contents from control and vitamin A deficient diet animals were measured by HPLC. Retinol was the predominant form of retinoids in male rat brains (77 to 92% of total retinol) and retinyl esters were the predominant form in female brain rats (4 to 44% of total retinol). The abundant ester in both sexes was the retinyl linoleate. Olfactory bulb and the midbrain contained the highest quantities of retinol and retinyl esters in both sexes. On the other hand, the vitamin A deficient diet significantly decreased the retinoid contents in male brain, in olfactory bulb (-30.7%), hindbrain (-46.2%) and increased it in forebrain (84.3%) and midbrain (2.2%). Total retinol was decreased in olfactory bulb (-38.7%), forebrain (-44.5%) and midbrain (-30.7%) and increased in hindbrain (23.4%) of vitamin A deficient female rats. In conclusion, retinol and retinyl esters were the brain compounds heterogeneously distributed throughout the brain areas in both the sexes and were significantly affected by vitamin A deficiency status as well.
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