Homocysteine concentration, related B vitamins, and betaine in pregnant women recruited to the Seychelles Child Development Study

Julie Wallace, Maxine P Bonham, JJ Strain, E. M Duffy, Paula J Robson, Mary Ward, Helene McNulty, Philip W Davidson, Gary J Myers, Conrad F Shamlaye, Tom W Clarkson, Anne M Molloy, John M Scott, Per M Ueland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Both folate and betaine are important predictors of total homocysteine (tHcy) during pregnancy. However, studies to date have only been undertaken in populations with Western dietary patterns. Objective: We investigated the predictors of tHcy in pregnant women recruited in the Seychelles, a population where access to fortified foods is limited and where women habitually consume diets rich in fish, eggs, rice, and fruit. Design: Pregnant women (n = 226) provided blood samples at enrollment, at week 28 of gestation, and at delivery. Cord blood was obtained from a subset of participants (n = 135). Results: As in other studies, maternal tHcy was lower during pregnancy than at delivery, whereas folate and vitamin B-12 status declined significantly to delivery. Despite low maternal folate status at delivery (median: 9.0 nmol/L), with 35% of women in the deficient range (serum folate: <6.8 nmol/L), cord blood folate status (median: 40.2 nmol/L) was similar to concentrations reported in Western populations. Folate was a significant predictor of tHcy at all time points (P < 0.001). In contrast with previous studies, betaine was only a significant predictor of maternal tHcy (P < 0.001) when the essential amino acid methionine was low. Conclusions: The current study reports 2 important findings. First, fetal requirements for folate are paramount, such that cord blood folate status is maintained, even when maternal status is low. Second, betaine is a significant predictor of tHcy in pregnant women with low serum folate and low serum methionine concentrations.
LanguageEnglish
Pages391-397
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume87
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2008

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Seychelles
Betaine
Vitamin B Complex
Homocysteine
Child Development
Folic Acid
Pregnant Women
Fetal Blood
Mothers
Methionine
Pregnancy
Serum
Fortified Food
Population
Essential Amino Acids
Vitamin B 12
Eggs
Fruit
Fishes

Keywords

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Cite this

Wallace, Julie ; Bonham, Maxine P ; Strain, JJ ; Duffy, E. M ; Robson, Paula J ; Ward, Mary ; McNulty, Helene ; Davidson, Philip W ; Myers, Gary J ; Shamlaye, Conrad F ; Clarkson, Tom W ; Molloy, Anne M ; Scott, John M ; Ueland, Per M. / Homocysteine concentration, related B vitamins, and betaine in pregnant women recruited to the Seychelles Child Development Study. In: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2008 ; Vol. 87, No. 2. pp. 391-397.
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Wallace, J, Bonham, MP, Strain, JJ, Duffy, EM, Robson, PJ, Ward, M, McNulty, H, Davidson, PW, Myers, GJ, Shamlaye, CF, Clarkson, TW, Molloy, AM, Scott, JM & Ueland, PM 2008, 'Homocysteine concentration, related B vitamins, and betaine in pregnant women recruited to the Seychelles Child Development Study', American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, vol. 87, no. 2, pp. 391-397.

Homocysteine concentration, related B vitamins, and betaine in pregnant women recruited to the Seychelles Child Development Study. / Wallace, Julie; Bonham, Maxine P; Strain, JJ; Duffy, E. M; Robson, Paula J; Ward, Mary; McNulty, Helene; Davidson, Philip W; Myers, Gary J; Shamlaye, Conrad F; Clarkson, Tom W; Molloy, Anne M; Scott, John M; Ueland, Per M.

In: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 87, No. 2, 02.2008, p. 391-397.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T1 - Homocysteine concentration, related B vitamins, and betaine in pregnant women recruited to the Seychelles Child Development Study

AU - Wallace, Julie

AU - Bonham, Maxine P

AU - Strain, JJ

AU - Duffy, E. M

AU - Robson, Paula J

AU - Ward, Mary

AU - McNulty, Helene

AU - Davidson, Philip W

AU - Myers, Gary J

AU - Shamlaye, Conrad F

AU - Clarkson, Tom W

AU - Molloy, Anne M

AU - Scott, John M

AU - Ueland, Per M

PY - 2008/2

Y1 - 2008/2

N2 - Background: Both folate and betaine are important predictors of total homocysteine (tHcy) during pregnancy. However, studies to date have only been undertaken in populations with Western dietary patterns. Objective: We investigated the predictors of tHcy in pregnant women recruited in the Seychelles, a population where access to fortified foods is limited and where women habitually consume diets rich in fish, eggs, rice, and fruit. Design: Pregnant women (n = 226) provided blood samples at enrollment, at week 28 of gestation, and at delivery. Cord blood was obtained from a subset of participants (n = 135). Results: As in other studies, maternal tHcy was lower during pregnancy than at delivery, whereas folate and vitamin B-12 status declined significantly to delivery. Despite low maternal folate status at delivery (median: 9.0 nmol/L), with 35% of women in the deficient range (serum folate: <6.8 nmol/L), cord blood folate status (median: 40.2 nmol/L) was similar to concentrations reported in Western populations. Folate was a significant predictor of tHcy at all time points (P < 0.001). In contrast with previous studies, betaine was only a significant predictor of maternal tHcy (P < 0.001) when the essential amino acid methionine was low. Conclusions: The current study reports 2 important findings. First, fetal requirements for folate are paramount, such that cord blood folate status is maintained, even when maternal status is low. Second, betaine is a significant predictor of tHcy in pregnant women with low serum folate and low serum methionine concentrations.

AB - Background: Both folate and betaine are important predictors of total homocysteine (tHcy) during pregnancy. However, studies to date have only been undertaken in populations with Western dietary patterns. Objective: We investigated the predictors of tHcy in pregnant women recruited in the Seychelles, a population where access to fortified foods is limited and where women habitually consume diets rich in fish, eggs, rice, and fruit. Design: Pregnant women (n = 226) provided blood samples at enrollment, at week 28 of gestation, and at delivery. Cord blood was obtained from a subset of participants (n = 135). Results: As in other studies, maternal tHcy was lower during pregnancy than at delivery, whereas folate and vitamin B-12 status declined significantly to delivery. Despite low maternal folate status at delivery (median: 9.0 nmol/L), with 35% of women in the deficient range (serum folate: <6.8 nmol/L), cord blood folate status (median: 40.2 nmol/L) was similar to concentrations reported in Western populations. Folate was a significant predictor of tHcy at all time points (P < 0.001). In contrast with previous studies, betaine was only a significant predictor of maternal tHcy (P < 0.001) when the essential amino acid methionine was low. Conclusions: The current study reports 2 important findings. First, fetal requirements for folate are paramount, such that cord blood folate status is maintained, even when maternal status is low. Second, betaine is a significant predictor of tHcy in pregnant women with low serum folate and low serum methionine concentrations.

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EP - 397

JO - American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

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SN - 0002-9165

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