INTRODUCTION: Hyperhomocysteinemia is one of the causes of the increased incidence of cardiovascular disease in uremia. Since homocysteine (Hcy) metabolism depends on the availability of folate and vitamin B12, we have measured the effects of chronic i.v. supplementation of folinic acid and vitamin B12 in a group of patients on maintenance hemodialysis. METHODS: We compared the blood concentration of total Hcy (tHcy), vitamin B12 and folate and the intraerythrocyte concentration of folate in a group of 27 hemodialysis patients (Treated group), given an i.v supplementation with folinic acid (0.9 mg) and Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamine 1.5 mg and hydroxycobalamine 1.5 mg) three times per week at the end of each dialysis session with those measured in a similar group of 28 hemodialysis patients without supplementation (No Treatment group). The patients were also characterized for the thermolabile variant (mutation C667-->T) of the enzyme methylene-tetrahydrofolate reductase (tMTHFR). RESULTS: High plasma levels (<11.7 micromol/L) of tHcy were observed in 54/55 patients. T patients had Hcy values significantly lower than NT ones (31.7+/-3.6 vs. 1.1+/-8.3micromol/L, p <0.05). Serum vitamin B12 (1200 73.6 vs. 762+/-72.2 pmol/L, p <0.001) and intraerythrocyte folate levels were also significantly higher in the T group (2176+/-127 vs. 1511+/-156, p <0.005), while no significant difference was observed for serum folate. The distribution of tMTHFR genotypes was similar in the two groups. Homozygous patients showed higher levels of Hcy in comparison with wild type patients both in the whole population (62.32+/-15.9 vs.30.43+/-3.2, p <0.05) and in the NT group (87.8+/-25.3 vs.36.8+/-13.1., p <0.05), while no significant difference was observed among genotypes in the T group. CONCLUSIONS: Uremic patients on hemodialysis, when supplemented with even low i.v. dose of folinic acid and vitamin B12, show significantly lower plasma levels of tHcy than non-supplemented patients.
|Translated title of the contribution||Intravenous folinic acid and vitamin B12 supplementation and homocysteine concentration in hemodialysis patients|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Giornale italiano di nefrologia : organo ufficiale della Società italiana di nefrologia|
|Publication status||Published - May 2002|
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