DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Light micrograph (LM) of Vitamin E crystals. Vitamin E (tocopherol) is a fat-soluble (lipophilic) vitamin that is an important antioxidant. Antioxidants such as vitamin E act to protect cells against the effects of free radicals, which are potentially damaging by-products of the body's metabolism. Free radicals can cause cell damage that may contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Vegetable oils, nuts, wheat germ and green leafy vegetables are the main dietary sources of vitamin E. Abetalipoproteinemia is a rare inherited disorder of fat metabolism that results in poor absorption of dietary fat and vitamin E. The vitamin E deficiency associated with this disease causes problems such as poor transmission of nerve impulses, muscle weakness, and degeneration of the retina that can cause blindness. Magnification: x40 when shortest axis printed at 25 millimetres.
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