MONDAY, Feb. 23, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- A new family of antioxidants that are 100 times more effective than vitamin E has been developed by a team of international scientists.
Antioxidants are molecules that counteract the tissue and organ damage caused by a process called oxidation.
"Vitamin E is nature's antioxidant and people have been trying to improve upon it for more than 20 years with only marginal success. We have taken a very big step in the right direction," Ned. A. Porter, the Stevenson Chair of Chemistry at Vanderbilt University, says in a prepared statement.
He supervised development of the new family of antioxidants, which have only been tested in the test tube. But Porter and his colleagues say studies with biological molecules, such as cholesterol, suggest these new compounds have properties that could make them suitable for dietary supplements.
Studies in living animals will begin soon to determine the efficacy and safety of this new family of antioxidants.
The finding was published in the European journal Angewandte Chemie International Edition.
The American Dietetic Association has more about antioxidants.