Plasma levels of lipophilic antioxidants in very old patients with Type 2 diabetes

M. C. Polidori, P. Mecocci, W. Stahl, B. Parente, R. Cecchetti, A. Cherubini, P. Cao, H. Sies, U. Senin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. Experimental research indicates that oxidative stress is implicated in aging and in the pathogenesis of diabetes and its complications. This evidence is limited in elderly patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes, in which age- and disease-related production of reactive oxygen species might exert synergistic damaging effects on tissues and organs. Methods. Plasma levels of lipid-soluble compounds with antioxidant properties including vitamin A, vitamin E and carotenoids (lutein, zeaxanthin, β-cryptoxanthin, lycopene, α- and β-carotene) were measured by HPLC in 72 elderly patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes (75.7 ± 0.8 years, 40 F, 32 M) and in 75 age-matched controls (77.2 ± 1.2 years, 48 F, 27 M). Results. All compounds measured were significantly lower in plasma from diabetic patients as compared to controls (p <0.0001). Plasma levels of vitamins A and E and of carotenoids did not significantly correlate with dietary intake and lipid profile in both groups. In patients, significant inverse correlations were found between age and levels of vitamin E, β-cryptoxanthin, lycopene and β-carotene. Conclusions. We conclude that patients of very old age with Type 2 diabetes show a poor plasma status of vitamins A and E and carotenoids, which negatively correlates with age. Further studies are needed to explore the possible therapeutic role of lipid-soluble vitamin supplements in elderly diabetic subjects. Copyright (C) 2000 John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-19
Number of pages5
JournalDiabetes/Metabolism Research and Reviews
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2000


  • Aging
  • Carotenoids
  • Diabetes
  • Oxidative stress
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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