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Atherosclerosis. 2003 Jul;169(1):169-74.

B vitamin status and inflammatory markers.

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  • 1Division of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, 1300 South Second Street, Suite 300, Minneapolis, MN 55454-1015, USA.


Limited evidence has suggested that low levels of circulating pyridoxal-5'-phosphate (PLP) may be associated with elevation of the inflammatory marker, C-reactive protein (CRP). We sought to determine whether the reported association of CRP with PLP was specific versus generalizable to other inflammation or hemostasis markers. Among 519 healthy middle aged adults in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study, we analyzed the cross-sectional relation of homocysteine, plasma and dietary B vitamin levels with multiple markers implicated in inflammation, endothelial dysfunction, or thrombogenesis: CRP, fibrinogen, white blood cell count, intracellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1), vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), E-selectin, factor VIII, and von Willebrand factor. There was no significant association (P>0.05) of von Willebrand factor, I-CAM, or V-CAM with any of the plasma or dietary measures examined, and no marker was associated significantly with serum homocysteine. Contrary to our hypothesis, plasma PLP was not associated with CRP concentration. A higher white blood cell count was associated with lower B vitamin status (lower plasma PLP and folate, lower dietary B6 and B12), though not with use of vitamin supplements. In ostensibly healthy adults, B-vitamin status is not a strong correlate of circulating levels of inflammatory markers, cellular adhesion molecules, or thrombogenic factors.

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