Tocotrienol, Part of Vitamin E Complex: Guest Article by Dr. Ariati Aris, Researcher of PetGaia

Jul 2, 2024

Many pet nutrition companies offer Omega-3 or fish oil products designed to support heart and brain health. However, with the market saturated with similar offerings, it has become challenging to differentiate one product from another.

Introducing Welly Tails’ Omega-3 Fortified Wild Ocean Fish Enhanced with PetGaiaTM, a revolutionary product that combines Omega-3 with tocotrienols and squalene. This innovative formulation leverages the synergistic effects of these ingredients, creating a "Super Omega-3s with PetGaia™" that stands out in a crowded market of ordinary Omega-3/fish oil products.

Tocotrienol, a member of the vitamin E family, is gaining attention for its potential benefits in pet health. Unlike the more common tocopherols, tocotrienols possess unique chemical structures that provide superior biological activities. It has been touted as the “Super Vitamin E”.  These benefits include potent antioxidant properties, anti-inflammatory effects, and the ability to support cardiovascular health.

While plant-derived squalene, another beneficial compound, is known for its antioxidant properties, enhancing skin health, and supporting immune function.

Combining Omega-3 with tocotrienols and squalene can provide synergistic health benefits for pets such as follows:

Enhanced Antioxidant Protection: Tocotrienols and squalene are powerful antioxidants. When combined with Omega-3, they provide comprehensive protection against oxidative stress, which can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases and support overall cellular health.

Tocotrienol was reported to be 40 to 60 times more potent antioxidants than the regular vitamin E tocopherol1. Several studies have shown that supplementing pets with full-spectrum palm tocotrienols increases plasma antioxidant capacity and results in their accumulation in key organs such as heart, lungs, and skin2,3. This suggests that tocotrienol supplementation can significantly boost antioxidant levels, potentially helping to prevent and treat degenerative disorders linked to oxidative stress. Additionally, squalene has been shown to possess antioxidant properties playing a critical role in reducing free radical oxidative damage to the skin4.

Anti-inflammatory Benefits: Omega-3 are well-known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Tocotrienols further enhance this effect by modulating inflammatory pathways. Together, they can help manage inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, improving mobility and quality of life in pets5,6.  Additionally, squalene has been shown to have this ability in managing inflammatory responses related to wound healing 7,8.

Skin and Coat Health: Omega-3 support a healthy coat and skin, reducing dryness and flakiness. Tocotrienols add an extra layer of protection by preventing oxidative damage to skin cells9,10. Furthermore, Squalene, being an excellent emollient, works alongside by aid in maintaining healthy skin and coat11.

Cardiovascular Support: Tocotrienols and squalene are noted for their ability to promotes cardiovascular health12,13,14,15. When paired with Omega-3, which are known for supporting heart health, the combination can help maintain a healthy cardiovascular system in pets.

Immune System Boost: Tocotrienol's role in enhancing immune function is well-documented16,17. Combined with the immune-supportive properties of squalene8,18 and Omega fatty acids, the trio can strengthen the immune system, making pets more resilient to infections and diseases.

In conclusion, incorporating tocotrienols, squalene, and Omega-3 into pet health formula, may offer multiple synergistic benefits, promoting overall health and vitality.


  1. Serbinova, E. et al. Free radical recycling and intramembrane mobility in the antioxidant properties of alpha-tocopherol and alpha-tocotrienol. Free Radic Biol Med, 10(5), 263-275 (1991).
  2. Khanna, S. et al. Delivery of orally supplemented α-tocotrienol to vital organs of rats and tocopherol-transport protein deficient mice. Free Radic. Biol. Med. 39(10), 1310–1319.
  3. Raila, J. et al. 2011. Increased antioxidant capacity in the plasma of dogs after a single oral dosage of tocotrienols. J. Nutr. 106, S116–S119.
  4. Micera, M. et al. 2020. Squalene: More than a Step toward Sterols.Antioxidants, 9, 688.
  5. Chong, WT. et al. 2022. In-Vitro and in-Vivo Evaluations of Tocotrienol-Rich Nanoemulsified System on Skin Wound Healing. PLoS ONE, 17, e0267381. 
  6. Yam, ML. et al. 2009. Tocotrienols suppress proinflammatory markers and cyclooxygenase-2 expression in RAW264.7 macrophages. Lipids. 44:787–797.
  7. Shanmugarajan, TS. et al. 2020. Development and Characterization of Squalene-Loaded Topical Agar-Based Emulgel Scaffold: Wound Healing Potential in Full-Thickness Burn Model. J. Low Extrem. Wounds. 20(4): 364-373.
  8. Sánchez-Quesada, C. et al. 2018. Squalene Stimulates a Key Innate Immune Cell to Foster Wound Healing and Tissue Repair. Based. Complement. Alternat. Med. 9473094.
  9. Traber, MG. et al. 1997. Diet-derived and topically applied tocotrienols accumulative in skin and protect the tissue against ultraviolet light-induced oxidative stress. Asia Pac. J. Clin. Nutr. 6(1): 63–67.
  10. Yamada, Y. et al. 2008. Dietary tocotrienol reduces UVB-induced skin damage and sesamin enhances tocotrienol effects in hairless mice. Nutr. Sci. Vitaminol. (Tokyo). 54(2):117-23.
  11. Aioi, A. et al. 1995. Effect of squalene on superoxide anion generation induced by a skin irritant, lauroylsarcosine. J. Pharm. 113, 159-164.
  12. Siddiqui, S. et al. 2013. Protective effects of tocotrienols against lipid-induced nephropathy in experimental type-2 diabetic rats by modulation in TGF-beta expression. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 273 (2): 314-324.
  13. Fang, F. et al. Vitamin E tocotrienols improve insulin sensitivity through activating peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors. Mol Nutr Food Res. 54 (3): 345-352.
  14. Kumar, SR. et al. 2016. Squalene modulates fatty acid metabolism: Enhanced EPA/DHA in obese/diabetic mice (KK-Ay) model. J. Lipid Sci. Technol. 118, 1935–1941.
  15. Smith, D. et al. 2000. Effect of a high saturated fat and cholesterol diet supplemented with squalene or β-sitosterol on lipoprotein profile in fib hamsters. Res. 20, 1309–1318.
  16. Mahalingam D, et al. 2011. Effects of supplementation with tocotrienol-rich fraction on immune response to tetanus toxoid immunization in normal healthy volunteers. Eur J Clin Nutr. 65 (1): 63-69.
  17. Ren, Z. et al. 2010. Dietary supplementation with tocotrienols enhances immune function in C57BL/6 mice. J Nutr. 140 (7): 1335-1341.
  18. Gao, Y. et al. 2022. Dietary supplementation of squalene increases the growth performance of early-weaned piglets by improving gut microbiota, intestinal barrier, and blood antioxidant capacity. Vet. Sci. 9:995548

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