In 1998, a World Health Report was published which estimated that there were 19.34 million people who were bilaterally blind from age-related cataract. This represented around 43% of all blindness. For India alone, 3.8 million people become blind from cataract each year. Globally around 5 million people at least go blind by cataract each year. It has also been estimated that approximately 100 million eyes with cataract causing a visual acuity less than 6/60, and this figure is likely to be 3-4 times more for cataract causing an acuity of less than 6/18. Well – developed countries perform around 4000 – 6000 cataract operations per million people each year. India itself has dramatically increased its cataract surgery rate in the last 10 years from less than 1500 to around 3000 today.
In the UK, 330,000 cataract operations are performed each year in England alone. It is estimated that around 30% of people 65 years or older have a visually impairing cataract in one or both eyes. 10% of people 65 or over have already had a cataract surgery. Around 95% of cataracts are age-related, usually after age 40 and approximately around 40% patients undergo cataract surgery on the both eyes in the UK. For America, cataracts affects 24 million people and by age 80, more than 50% Americans are affected with Cataract. The US spends $10.7 Billion per year treating cataracts.
Scientists and researchers have discovered Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto), which has been studied for its anti – oxidative properties against several ailments and diseases and cataractogenesis is one of them. Several studies have been conducted for the effects of Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) on eye health and one such study, “Effects of topically applied tocotrienol on cataractogenesis and lens redox status in galactosemic rats” has shown that Delta – Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) may delay the beginning of cataracts when it is applied to the eyes. This is likely due to reduced oxidative stress and nitrosative stress to the lenses, which are exposed to environmental oxidants. Nitrosative stress is the reaction of body tissues to nitric acid greater than can be neutralized. These studies were conducted at University Teknologi MARA, Malaysia.
In one study conducted on rats, researchers tested the effects of Tocotrienol on cataract formation, with results showing that Tocorienol showed cataract onset and progression by reducing oxidative and notrosative stress as shown in Fig. 18. Tocotrienol had a beneficial effect on lens antioxidant enzymes, including superoxide dismutase and catalase, both of which returned to normal levels with the tropical treatment. Furthermore Tocotrienol significantly decreased malondialdehyde, alipid peroxidation end product found to be high in cataracts, and restored the lens soluble to insoluble protein ration to normal levels. The study revealed that low doses of Tocotrienol in a tropical application were almost effective, with best outcomes obtained at 0.03% or 300 ppm.
In another study, using the same eye drop formulation at 0.03 Tocotrienol concentration, confirmed that cataract progression was halted with the treatment. In the diabetic rats with advanced – stage cataracts, Tocotrienol was able to protect the lens, reducing lens aldose reductase and sorbitol, and reducing inflammation and oxidative stress. Notably, Tocotrienol restored lens transparency back to normal, while also improving the lens mitochondrial function. While previous study showed that Delta – Tocotrienol (Eannatto – DeltaGold) is absorbed in the eye tissue, this is the first study on its beneficial effect on a cataract.
Angiogenesis is the aberrant growth of blood vessels, and is directly involved in eye conditions such as diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration, which are among the leading causes of blindness. Tocotrienols reduce angiogenesis, and hence may slow down angiogenesis – related ocular conditions, including retinotherapy and macular degeneration. In most of the cases it was also observed that, rats did not even progressed to stage 4 of cataractogenesus when treated with Tocotrienol.
Most research in the past 50 – 60 years has been focused on Tocopherols and 50% of all the research in last 30 years has been done on Tocotrienols in last 5 years. Half of the Tocotrienol research ever published has been published in last 10 years as shown in Fig. 1. Each day it is becoming increasingly understood that Tocotienols (especially Eannatto – DeltaGold) are the right form of Vitamin E. Well in excess of 100 studies and clinical trials have shown the surprising benefits of Tocotrienols – without any known side effects.
Fig. 1: In the graph, as you can see, R & D on Tocotrienol has increased exponentially over the years in all fields while research on Tocopherols has decreased. Whether it is cancer, Cardiovascular diseases (CVD), Diabetes, Anti – Oxidant activities or others, in all fields research on Tocotrienol has not only gained pace but quant as well.
Study 1 – Effects of topically applied tocotrienol on cataractogenesis and lens redox status in galactosemic rats.
Purpose Oxidative and Nitrosative stress leads to cataractogenesis, and therefore, various antioxidants have been investigated for anti – cataract properties. Several vitamin E isoforms have also been investigated for anti – cataract effects due to their antioxidant properties. However, the anti – cataract properties of Tocotrienols (DeltaGold – Eannatto) have not been investigated. In this study, the effects of topically applied Tocotrienols (DeltaGold – Eannatto) on the onset and progression of cataract and lenticular oxidative and nitrosative stress in galactosemic rats was investigated. Methods In the first part of this study, the effects of topically applied microemulsion formulation of tocotrienol (TTE) using six concentrations ranging from 0.01% to 0.2% was investigated. 8 groups of Sprague-Dawley rats (n = 9) received distilled water, vehicle, or one of the six TTE concentrations as pretreatment topically twice per day, daily for 3 weeks while on a normal diet.
Fig. 2: Retroillumination anterior segment photographs showing the progression of cataract from stage 0 to stage 4 in mice.
A: Stage 0. B: Stage 1A. C: Stage 1B. D: Stage 1C. E: Stage 2A. F: Stage 2B. G: Stage 3. H: Stage 4.
After pretreatment, animals in groups 2 to 8 received a 25% galactose diet whereas group 1 continued on the normal diet for four weeks. During this four – week period, topical treatment continued as for pretreatment. Weekly slit – lamp examination was performed to assess cataract progression. In the end of the experimental period, the animals were euthanized, and the proteins and oxidative stress parameters were estimated and investigated in the lenses. In the 2nd part of the study, we contrasted the anti – cataract efficacy of the TTE with the liposomal formulation of tocotrienol (TTL) using 5 groups of Sprague – Dawley rats (n = 15) that received distilled water, TTL, TTE, or corresponding vehicle. The mode of administration and dosing schedule were the same as in study 1. Weekly ophthalmic examination and lens protein and oxidative stress estimates were performed like in study 1. Lens nitrosative stress was also estimated. Results During the 4-week treatment period, the groups treated with 0.03% and 0.02% tocotrienol showed slower progression of cataract compared to the vehicle-treated group (p<0.05), whereas the group treated with 0.2% tocotrienol showed faster progression of cataract compared to the vehicle-treated group (p<0.05). The lenticular protein content, malondialdehyde, superoxide dismutase, and catalase levels were normalized in the groups that received 0.03% and 0.02% tocotrienol. The lenticular reduced glutathione also showed a trend toward normalization in these groups. In contrast, the group treated with 0.2% Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) showed increased lenticular oxidative stress. When the micro – emulsion and liposomal formulations were compared, the effects on cataract progression, lens oxidative and nitrosative stress, and lens protein content did not show significant differences.
Fig. 3: Effect of micro – emulsion formulation of Tocotrienols (DeltaGold – Eannatto) (TTE) in various concentrations on the opacity index of galactose-fed rats during 4 weeks of treatment. All values are mean with ± standard deviation (SD; n = 18). ap<0.001 versus normal; bp<0.01 versus vehicle; cp<0.05 versus 0.2% tocotrienol (TTE); dp<0.05 versus 0.1% TTE; ep<0.05 versus 0.05% TTE, fp<0.05 versus 0.02% TTE, gp<0.05 versus 0.01% TTE.
Fig. 4: Effect of Tocotrienols (DeltaGold – Eannatto) (0.03%) in micro – emulsion (TTE) and liposomal (TTL) formulation of on the opacity index of galactose fed rats during 4 weeks period of treatment. VE – vehicle for micro – emulsion, VL – vehicle for liposomes. All values are mean ± standard deviation (SD; n = 6). ap<0.05 versus normal; bp<0.05 versus VE; cp<0.05 versus VL.
Fig. 5: Effect of micro – emulsion and liposomal formulation of Tocotrienols (DeltaGold – Eannatto) (0.03%) on lens iNOS and 3-NT during 4 weeks period of treatment. iNOS- inducible nitric oxide synthase; NT- nitrotyrosine; VE – vehicle for microemulsion; VL – vehicle for liposomes. All values are mean ± SD (n=6). ap < 0.05 versus normal; bp < 0.05 versus VE; cp < 0.05 versus VL.
Topically applied Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) within the concentration range of less than 0.05% and more than 0.01% tends to delay the onset and progression of cataract in galactose-fed rats by reducing lenticular oxidative and nitrosative stress. However, topical Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) at a concentration of 0.2% and higher aggravates cataractogenesis in galactose-fed rats by increasing lens oxidative stress. The anti – cataract efficacy of 0.03% microemulsion of Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) did not differ from its liposomal formulations at the same concentration.
Fig. 6: Rats which were not treated with eye drops containing Tocotrienol suffered a rapid progression in cataractogenesis from stage 2 to stage 3 and then 4 as shown in the graph but when their eyes were treated with eye drops containing Tocotrienol, the progression was either completely arrested or delayed.
- Delay of Cataract has been shown by Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) in various studies by reducing oxidative stress and nitrosative stress.
- Less Transparency can be restored back to normal by applying Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) in drops.
- Lens Mitochondrial Function has also been observed to improve by action of Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto).
- Angiogenesis is the aberrant growth of blood vessels, and is directly involved in eye conditions such as diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration, which are among the leading causes of blindness. Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) reduce angiogenesis, and hence may slow down angiogenesis – related ocular conditions, including retinotherapy and macular degeneration.
- Take advice of medical practitioner regarding the dosage of Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) for cataract.
- Substances that complement Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) for eye health include Lutein, Zeaxanthin, Omega – 3 fatty acids, Vitamins A, C and Zinc.
Why Tocotrienol and Not Tocopherol?
- Tocopherol, the enemy of Tocotrienol: In the studies, Tocopherol was observed to interfere in the functioning of Tocotrienol! Tocopherol has been observed to attenuate cancer inhibition, inhibits absorption, reduces adipose storage, and compromises cholesterol and triglyceride reduction.
- Tocotrienol, the protector of State: Tocotrienol has more mobility than Tocopherol due to its small structure so it can cover a larger area targeting more number of cells.
- Small structure and less molecular weight: The higher anti-oxidant activity of Tocotrienols is due to their small structure and less molecular weight which assist in their integration of the cell, unlike Tocopherols.
- Tocotrienol, the more potent antioxidant, Tocotrienol (DeltaGold – Eannatto) is 50 times more potent than Tocopherols.
- Absorption: As compared to Tocopherols, Tocotrienols absorb better in the body and Tocopherols have been observed to prevent absorption of Tocotrienols.
Fig. 5: The 2nd pie chart represents Palm Tocotrienol rich fraction with 32% Alpha – Tocopherol which was given to people and when the Alpha – Tocopherol was removed then it was represented by the 1st pie chart with 0.3% Alpha – Tocopherol which was then given to people. In the graph, the hollow bar represents the Tocotrienol with Tocopherol which reduced the concentrations of Alpha, Gamma and Delta Tocotrienol in the body but when Tocopherol was removed from the dosage (Solid grey bars in graph), the concentrations of Alpha, Gamma and Delta – Tocotrienol significantly increased.
- Effects of topically applied tocotrienol on cataractogenesis and lens redox status in galactosemic rats by Nurul Alimah Abdul Nasir, Renu Agarwal, Sushil Vasudevan, Minaketan Tripathy, Renad Alyautdin, and Nafeeza Mohd Ismail
- The Truth About Vitamin E: The Secret to Thriving with Annatto Tocotrienols by Barrie Tan
- Cataract Statistics and Resources
- Vision 2020: The Cataract Challenge.
- To read studies in detail, follow the references and links given.
- The dosages given must not be taken as the advice of a medical practitioner. Consult your physician for the optimum dosage to be consumed.