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Disordered methionine/homocysteine metabolism in premature vascular disease. Its occurrence, cofactor therapy, and enzymology
Department of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Prince Henry Hospital, Uttle Bay, UK.
Department of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Prince Henry Hospital, Uttle Bay, UK.
Department of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Prince Henry Hospital, Uttle Bay, UK.
Department of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Prince Henry Hospital, Uttle Bay, UK.
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1993 (English)In: Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology, ISSN 1079-5642, E-ISSN 1524-4636, Vol. 13, no 9, 1253-1260 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Mild homocysteinemia occurs surprisingly often in patients with premature vascular disease. We studied the possible enzymatic sources of this mild hyperhomocysteinemia and the control of homocysteine levels in plasma by treatment of patients with the cofactors and cosubstrates of homocysteine catabolism. We assessed homocysteine metabolism in 131 patients who had premature disease in their coronary, peripheral, or cerebrovascular circulation by using a standard oral methionine-load test. Impaired homocysteine metabolism occurred in 28 patients. We assayed levels of the primary enzymes of homocysteine catabolism in cultured skin fibroblast extracts from 15 of these 28 patients. The patients' cystathionine beta-synthase levels (3.68 +/- 2.52 nmol/h per milligram of cell protein, mean +/- SD) were markedly depressed compared with those from 31 healthy adult control subjects (7.61 +/- 4.49, P < .001). The patients' levels of 5-methyltetrahydrofolate: homocysteine methyltransferase were normal. While betaine: homocysteine methyltransferase was not expressed in skin fibroblasts, 24-hour urinary betaine and N,N-dimethylglycine measurements were consistent with normal or enhanced remethylation of homocysteine by betaine: homocysteine methyltransferase in the 13 patients tested. When treated daily with choline and betaine, pyridoxine, or folic acid, there was a normalization of the postmethionine plasma homocysteine level in 16 of 19 patients. Our results indicate that mild homocysteinemia in premature vascular disease may be caused by either a folate deficiency or deficiencies in cystathionine beta-synthase activity. It does not necessarily involve deficiencies of either 5-methyltetrahydrofolate:homocysteine methyltransferase or betaine:homocysteine methyltransferase. Effective treatment regimens are also defined.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
American Heart Association , 1993. Vol. 13, no 9, 1253-1260 p.
Keyword [en]
5-Methyltetrahydrofolate-Homocysteine S-Methyltransferase/metabolism, Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Betaine-Homocysteine S-Methyltransferase, Cerebrovascular Disorders/*metabolism, Coronary Disease/drug therapy/*metabolism, Cystathionine beta-Synthase/metabolism, Female, Homocysteine/*metabolism, Humans, Male, Methionine/*metabolism, Methyltransferases/metabolism, Middle Aged, Peripheral Vascular Diseases/*metabolism, Vitamins/therapeutic use
National Category
Physical Chemistry
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-114161DOI: 10.1161/01.ATV.13.9.1253PubMedID: 8364009OAI: diva2:790725

1049-8834 (Print) Journal Article Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

Available from: 2015-02-25 Created: 2015-02-11 Last updated: 2015-03-05Bibliographically approved

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Lundberg, Peter
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Division of Radiological SciencesFaculty of Health SciencesCenter for Medical Image Science and Visualization (CMIV)Department of Radiation Physics
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Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology
Physical Chemistry

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