Vitamin E deficiency is associated with increased platelet aggregation, which can be normalized through vitamin E supplementation. In diabetes, increased platelet thromboxane A2 (TXA2) production is correlated with decreased platelet vitamin E content. We therefore investigated the effect of 400 mg DL-α-tocopherol acetate daily for 4 wk on ADP- and collagen-induced platelet aggregation and platelet TXA2 production in 22 type I (insulin-dependent) diabetic patients without macroangiopathy and with no or only minimal microangiopathy by a double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study. Platelet aggregation was induced in platelet-rich plasma by two or three different concentrations of ADP and collagen. TXA2 was measured by the stable spontaneous breakdown product thromboxane B2 by a specific radioimmunoassay. Whereas metabolic control remained unchanged during the study period, platelet TXA2 production was significantly (P < .05 and P < .01) reduced at each ADP concentration and at two of three collagen concentrations. Because increased TXA2 production of diabetic platelets is thought to play an important pathogenetic role in diabetic angiopathy, we conclude that vitamin E treatment could be beneficial with respect to platelet–vessel-wall interaction and thus might be promising for the prevention of diabetic angiopathy.

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