Vitamin E was discovered by Herbert McLean Evans (1882-1971) and Katharine Scott Bishop of the University of California-Berkeley in 1922. Evans and Bishop discovered in their experiments on rats that without vitamin E (as it was later named), the rats became sterile. The vitamin E nickname of the “anti-sterility vitamin” has been cited in print since at least 1925.
Other vitamin nicknames include “Anti-Infective Vitamin” (Vitamin A), “Anti-Stress Vitamin” (Vitamin B5), “Forgotten Vitamin” (Vitamin K), “Memory Vitamin” (Choline), “Morale Vitamin” (Vitamin B1), “Sunshine Vitamin” (Vitamin D), “Vitamin of Memory” (Vitamin B1) and “Woman’s Vitamin” (Vitamin B6).
Wikipedia: Vitamin E
Vitamin E refers to a group of eight fat-soluble compounds that include both tocopherols and tocotrienols. There are many different forms of vitamin E, of which γ-tocopherol is the most common in the North American diet. γ-Tocopherol can be found in corn oil, soybean oil, margarine and dressings. In the North American diet, α-Tocopherol, the most biologically active form of vitamin E, is the second most common form of vitamin E. This variant of vitamin E can be found most abundantly in wheat germ oil, sunflower, and safflower oils. It is a fat-soluble antioxidant that stops the production of reactive oxygen species formed when fat undergoes oxidation.
Wikipedia: Herbert McLean Evans
Herbert McLean Evans (September 23, 1882–March 6, 1971) was a U.S. anatomist and embryologist.
In 1922 along with Katharine Scott Bishop, during feeding experiments on rats, he co-discovered Vitamin E which is needed for human reproduction. Evans became director of the Institute of Experimental Biology at Berkeley, in 1931. He continued his research on vitamin E and was finally able to isolate the pure compound from wheat germs in 1937.
5 May 1925, Oakland (CA) Tribune, “Discoverer of ‘Vitamin Y’ Back From Trip East,” pg. 21, col. 8:
(Dr. Herbert M. Evans of the University of California. The name “vitamin E” was not used initially—ed.)
Dr. Evans also addressed the National Academy of Sciences on the status of work on the anti-sterility vitamin.
7 December 1925, Le Mars (IA) Globe-Post:
Vitamin E, the anti-sterility vitamin, was originally referred to as vitamin R, because of the uncertainty as to whether or not it should be classed ...
31 July 1926, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Diet and Health” by Lulu Hunt Peters, M. D., pt. 1, pg. 5, col. 5:
It has been found in animals that a vitaminless diet is productive of sterility and there are investigators who believe that there is an anti-sterility vitamin, Vitamin E.
Google News Archive
31 July 1928, Meriden (CT) Record, “Vitamin E and Sterility” ("Diet and Health” by Lulu Hunt Peters, M. D.), pg. 13, col. 5:
This anti-sterility vitamin you refer to is called vitamin E. It was discovered through the work of Drs. Evans and Bishop of the University of California. They found that young rats could be fed a diet which was correct so far as mineral elements and the known vitamins are concerned, and still become sterile. On the addition of certain foods their fertility was restored. The anti-sterility factor in these foods was named vitamin E, that being the next letter in the alphabet after vitamins A, B, C and D were discovered and so named.
OCLC WorldCat record
The anti-sterility vitamin : fat-soluble E
Author: Elliot Korim
Dissertation: Thesis (A.B., Honors)--Harvard University, 1940.
Edition/Format: Thesis/dissertation : Thesis/dissertation : English
For the use of feed manufacturers, feed dealers, feed salesmen and service men, veterinarians, hatcherymen, breeders, and poultrymen:
A text and reference book for instructors, students and all persons interested in poultry feeds and feeding.
By William Raiford Ewing
Pasadena, CA: R. Ewing
The anti-sterility vitamin. — Vitamin “E” is sometimes called the anti-sterility vitamin, because without vitamin E in the ration of animals there is sterility of males and a reproductive failure in females.
By Aroona Reejhsinghani
New Delhi: Health Harmony
Sources: Vegetable oils, egg yolks, cereals, nuts, sprouted beans and pulses, and margarine.
Beneficial effects: This is anti-sterility vitamin. It is scientifically claimed that conception cannot occur without an adequate amount of this vitamin.
Gerard’s Opus 22:
The Joys of Health, Fitness & Youth; Yours, in 22 Days
By Gerard Dickert Schainuck
Bloomington, IN: iUniverse
Long known as the anti-sterility vitamin, this is now being used by some gynecologists with the B complex to relieve menopause systems.