All About Multiple Sclerosis

More MS news articles for November 2003

Alpha-Tocopherol and NADPH in the Erythrocytes and Plasma of Multiple Sclerosis Patients. Effect of Interferon-beta-1b Treatment

Eur Neurol. 2003;50(4):215-9
Karg E, Klivenyi P, Bencsik K, Turi S, Vecsei L.
Department of Pediatrics, Albert Szent-Gyorgyi Medical School, University of Szeged, Szeged, Hungary.


To investigate the influence of interferon-beta-1b (INF-beta-1b) therapy on blood antioxidants (alpha-tocopherol and NADPH) in multiple sclerosis (MS).


Patients with relapsing-remitting MS (n = 14) have been studied during 6 months of INF-beta-1b therapy.

alpha-Tocopherol was determined by HPLC and UV or electrochemical detection; NADPH was quantified spectrophotometrically.


The erythrocyte alpha-tocopherol level was reduced (p < 0.001) before treatment, but had regained the control level by 6 months of therapy.

The plasma alpha-tocopherol/lipid ratios were constant during therapy.

Plasma triglyceride levels were transiently increased (p = 0.0270) after 1 month of treatment.

INF-beta-1b had also induced a transient decrease in NADPH after 1 month, but thereafter the level returned to approximately the initial value (p = 0.0248).


INF-beta-1b seems to exert a sparing effect toward the erythrocyte alpha-tocopherol content.

The fall in NADPH in parallel to the rise in plasma triglycerides suggests stimulation of fatty acid synthesis by INF-beta-1b.