Author(s): Marquardt D, Williams JA, Kuerka N, Atkinson J, Wassall SR,
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Abstract We show evidence of an antioxidant mechanism for vitamin E which correlates strongly with its physical location in a model lipid bilayer. These data address the overlooked problem of the physical distance between the vitamin's reducing hydrogen and lipid acyl chain radicals. Our combined data from neutron diffraction, NMR, and UV spectroscopy experiments all suggest that reduction of reactive oxygen species and lipid radicals occurs specifically at the membrane's hydrophobic-hydrophilic interface. The latter is possible when the acyl chain "snorkels" to the interface from the hydrocarbon matrix. Moreover, not all model lipids are equal in this regard, as indicated by the small differences in vitamin's location. The present result is a clear example of the importance of lipid diversity in controlling the dynamic structural properties of biological membranes. Importantly, our results suggest that measurements of aToc oxidation kinetics, and its products, should be revisited by taking into consideration the physical properties of the membrane in which the vitamin resides.
This article was published in J Am Chem Soc
and referenced in Enzyme Engineering