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Obstet Gynecol. 1996 Apr;87(4):564-7.

Serum vitamin A and beta-carotene levels in pregnant women infected with human immunodeficiency virus-1.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.



To determine if low levels of serum vitamin A and beta-carotene are present in pregnant women with human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) infection.


Serum concentrations of vitamin A and beta-carotene were measured in 74 pregnant women seropositive for HIV-1 infection (17 with CD4 count below 200 cells/microliter) and in 148 pregnant seronegative controls in the first trimester. Comparisons were made between groups stratified by CD4 count.


Compared with controls, women with HIV-1 infection and CD4 count below 200 cells/microliter exhibited 37% lower mean serum vitamin A levels (0.820 versus 1.308 micromol/L, P < .001) and 37% lower mean serum beta-carotene levels (1.486 versus 2.362 micromol/L, P < .001). Mean maternal age, parity, gestational age, hemoglobin levels, and body mass index at entry into the study did not differ significantly between the control and HIV-1 infection groups. In addition, serum vitamin A levels correlated significantly with the percentage of CD4 lymphocytes (r = 0.589, P < .001), CD4 count (r = 0.772, P < .001), and CD4 to CD8 ratio (r = 0.593, P < .001). Serum beta-carotene levels correlated with the percentage of CD4 lymphocytes (r = 0.407, P < .001), CD4 count (r = 0.614, P < .001), and CD4 to CD8 ratio (r = 0.434, P < .001).


Compared with levels in uninfected women, serum vitamin A and beta-carotene are decreased in HIV-1-infected pregnant women in the first trimester with CD4 counts lower than 200 cells/microliter. These micronutrient concentrations also correlate with CD4 count.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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