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Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)

Published in Association with the European Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (EFLM)

Editor-in-Chief: Plebani, Mario

Ed. by Gillery, Philippe / Lackner, Karl J. / Lippi, Giuseppe / Melichar, Bohuslav / Payne, Deborah A. / Schlattmann, Peter / Tate, Jillian R.

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1437-4331
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Volume 47, Issue 3 (Mar 2009)

Issues

Vitamin B12 deficiency is associated with coronary artery disease in an Indian population

Jitender Kumar
  • 1Proteomics and Structural Biology Unit, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Delhi, India
/ Gaurav Garg
  • 2Proteomics and Structural Biology Unit, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Delhi, India
/ Elayanambi Sundaramoorthy
  • 3Proteomics and Structural Biology Unit, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Delhi, India
/ P. Veerendra Prasad
  • 4Human Genetics Unit, Indian Statistical Institute, B.T. Road, Kolkata, India
/ Ganesan Karthikeyan
  • 5Department of Cardiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
/ Lakshmy Ramakrishnan
  • 6Department of Cardiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
/ Saurabh Ghosh
  • 7Human Genetics Unit, Indian Statistical Institute, B.T. Road, Kolkata, India
/ Shantanu Sengupta
  • 8Proteomics and Structural Biology Unit, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Delhi, India
Published Online: 2009-02-04 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/CCLM.2009.074

Abstract

Background: The incidence of coronary artery disease (CAD) is increasing at an alarming rate, especially in developing countries, such as India. It is often advocated that a vegetarian lifestyle could reduce the burden of CAD. However, in spite of a majority of Indians being vegetarians, the incidence of CAD is highest in this population. This may be due to deficiency of vitamin B12, a micronutrient, sourced only from animal products.

Methods: Herein, we assessed the effect of vitamin B12 with respect to CAD in 816 individuals (368 CAD patients and 448 controls) recruited from a tertiary care center in New Delhi, India.

Results: We found that vitamin B12 levels were significantly lower in CAD patients than in controls (p<0.0001). Also, vegetarians were found to have significantly lower vitamin B12 concentrations (p=0.0001) and higher incidence of CAD (p=0.01). Interestingly, elevated homocysteine levels, a hallmark of vitamin B12 deficiency, was not associated with CAD. In contrast, cysteine levels were significantly higher in CAD patients than in controls (p=0.004).

Conclusions: We believe that, when vitamin B12 is deficient, homocysteine is rapidly metabolized via the transsulfuration pathway leading to increased cysteine levels.

Clin Chem Lab Med 2009;47:334–8.

Keywords: coronary artery disease; cysteine; homocysteine; vegetarian diet; vitamin B12

About the article

Corresponding author: Shantanu Sengupta, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Mall Road, Delhi 110007 Phone: +91-11-27666156, Fax: +91-11-27667471,


Received: 2008-10-30

Accepted: 2008-12-18

Published Online: 2009-02-04

Published in Print: 2009-03-01


Citation Information: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine, ISSN (Online) 1437-4331, ISSN (Print) 1434-6621, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/CCLM.2009.074. Export Citation

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