Efffects of dietary zinc deficiency on plasma homocysteine and folate in the rat

K. H. Hong, T. Tamura, K. E. Johnston, Carl L Keen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Dietary Zn deficiency in adult male rats has been reported to result in elevated hepatic methionine synthase activity, and alterations in the distribution of hepatic folate derivatives. Given that folate is essential for numerous one carbon transfer reactions required for the synthesis and metabolism of select amino acids and nucleic acids, we investigated the effect of Zn deficiency on plasma homocysteine and folate levels. Weanling male rats were fed ad libitum a control (C) diet (348.8 nmol Zn/g), or a Zn deficient (ZD) diet (7.7), or the control diet pair-fed (PF) to the intake of the ZD rats, for 6 weeks. Body weights of the ZD (136±SE,5 g) and PF groups (171±5) were significantly lower than those of the C group (401±10). Plasma Zn levels were significantly lower in the ZD group (7.3±0.7 umol/L) than in the C and PF groups (22.0±0.5; 21.0±0.5). Liver Zn levels in the ZD group (376±13 umol/g) were significantly lower than in the C group (444±18) but not the PF group (396±9). Plasma folate levels were significantly lower in the ZD group (67.8±5.1 nmol/L) than in the C and PF groups (154.3±9.8; 108.9±7.6). Plasma homocysteine levels in the ZD group (2.33±0.20 umol/L) were significantly lower than in the C and PF groups (6.65±0.50; 3.17±0.36). In summary, our finding of reduced plasma folate and homocysteine levels in dietary zinc deficiency is consistent with the previous report indicating hepatic methionine synthase activity is increased in ZD rats. In addition, reduced plasma homocysteine levels can be linked to reduced food intake in both ZD and PF groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalFASEB Journal
Volume11
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology

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  • Cite this

    Hong, K. H., Tamura, T., Johnston, K. E., & Keen, C. L. (1997). Efffects of dietary zinc deficiency on plasma homocysteine and folate in the rat. FASEB Journal, 11(3).