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Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Mar;89(3):844-52. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2008.26878. Epub 2009 Jan 21.

Steady state folate concentrations achieved with 5 compared with 1.1 mg folic acid supplementation among women of childbearing age.

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  • 1Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Synthetic folic acid (0.4-1.0 mg) consumed during the periconceptional period has been shown to reduce the risk of neural tube defects. Women with poor supplement adherence or a previous pregnancy affected by a neural tube defect may need to take higher doses of folic acid (4-5 mg). However, there are limited data on the pharmacokinetics of higher folic acid doses.

OBJECTIVE:

Our aim was to compare steady state folate concentrations in women of childbearing age who took 5 or 1.1 mg folic acid daily for 30 wk.

DESIGN:

Forty nonpregnant women aged between 18 and 45 y, who did not take folic acid supplements, were enrolled in the study. Subjects were randomly assigned to take either 5 or 1.1 mg folic acid daily for 30 wk. Plasma and red blood cell (RBC) folate concentrations were measured at baseline and at weeks 2, 4, 6, 12, and 30.

RESULTS:

There was no significant difference in baseline RBC folate concentrations between the 2 groups (1121 +/- 410 and 1035 +/- 273 nmol/L for the 5- and 1.1-mg folic acid groups, respectively). Significant differences in RBC folate were detected between groups at weeks 4, 6, 12, and 30. RBC folate concentrations by week 30 were 2339 +/- 782 and 1625 +/- 339 nmol/L for the 5- and 1.1-mg folic acid groups, respectively.

CONCLUSION:

The use of 5 mg folic acid among women of childbearing age produced higher blood folate concentrations, with a faster rate of folate accumulation, compared with 1.1 mg folic acid.

PMID:
19158211
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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