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PLoS One. 2012;7(10):e47991. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0047991. Epub 2012 Oct 31.

Vitamin k intake and plasma desphospho-uncarboxylated matrix Gla-protein levels in kidney transplant recipients.

Author information

1
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Nephrology, University Medical Center Groningen and University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.

Abstract

Vitamin K is essential for activation of γ-carboxyglutamate (Gla)-proteins including the vascular calcification inhibitor matrix Gla-protein (MGP). Insufficient vitamin K intake leads to production of uncarboxylated, mostly inactive proteins and contributes to an increased cardiovascular risk. In kidney transplant recipients, cardiovascular risk is high but vitamin K intake and status have not been defined. We investigated dietary vitamin K intake, vascular vitamin K status and its determinants in kidney transplant recipients. We estimated vitamin K intake in a cohort of kidney transplant recipients (n = 60) with stable renal function (creatinine clearance 61 [42-77] (median [interquartile range]) ml/min), who were 75 [35-188] months after transplantation, using three-day food records and food frequency questionnaires. Vascular vitamin K status was assessed by measuring plasma desphospho-uncarboxylated MGP (dp-ucMGP). Total vitamin K intake was below the recommended level in 50% of patients. Lower vitamin K intake was associated with less consumption of green vegetables (33 vs 40 g/d, p = 0.06) and increased dp-ucMGP levels (621 vs 852 pmol/L, p<0.05). Accordingly, dp-ucMGP levels were elevated (>500 pmol/L) in 80% of patients. Multivariate regression identified creatinine clearance, coumarin use, body mass index, high sensitivity-CRP and sodium excretion as independent determinants of dp-ucMGP levels. In a considerable part of the kidney transplant population, vitamin K intake is too low for maximal carboxylation of vascular MGP. The high dp-ucMGP levels may result in an increased risk for arterial calcification. Whether increasing vitamin K intake may have health benefits for kidney transplant recipients should be addressed by future studies.

PMID:
23118917
PMCID:
PMC3485347
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0047991
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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