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Biol Psychiatry. 1995 Feb 1;37(3):170-4.

Choline ingestion increases the resonance of choline-containing compounds in human brain: an in vivo proton magnetic resonance study.

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Brain Imaging Center, McLean Hospital, Belmont, MA, USA.


Choline is a crucial intermediate in several clinically relevant neurochemical processes. In this study, choline-containing compounds in human brain (principally phosphocholine, glycero-phosphocholine, and choline) were measured by 1H-magnetic resonance spectroscopy, before and after the ingestion of 50 mg/kg choline in four normal control subjects. Substantial and remarkably similar increases in the brain choline resonance occurred in each subject, with a nearly two-fold rise in the choline resonance observed 3 hr following choline ingestion (p = 0.008 versus baseline). One subject also received a dose of 200 mg/kg choline, and exhibited a proportionally larger increase in the brain choline resonance. The results are consistent with animal data reporting a rise in choline-containing compounds following choline administration. This is the first study to our knowledge where an oral nutrient has been shown to produce a detectable change in human brain composition in vivo. Studying choline transport and biotransformation in human brain may have relevance to several neuropsychiatric disorders, including affective disorders and dementia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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