Previous animal studies showed that severe vitamin B-6 deficiency altered fatty acid profiles of tissue lipids, often with an increase of linoleic acid and a decrease of arachidonic acid. However, little is known about the extent to which vitamin B-6 deficiency affects human fatty acid profiles. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of marginal vitamin B-6 deficiency on fatty acid profiles in plasma, erythrocytes, and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) of healthy adults fed a 28-d, low-vitamin B-6 diet. Healthy participants (n = 23) received a 2-d, controlled, vitamin B-6-adequate diet followed by a 28-d, vitamin B-6-restricted diet to induce a marginal deficiency. Plasma HDL and LDL cholesterol concentrations, FFA concentrations, and erythrocyte and PBMC membrane fatty acid compositions did not significantly change from baseline after the 28-d restriction. Plasma total arachidonic acid, EPA, and DHA concentrations decreased from (mean ± SD) 548 ± 96 to 490 ± 94 μmol/L, 37 ± 13 to 32 ± 13 μmol/L, and 121 ± 28 to 109 ± 28 μmol/L [positive false discovery rate (pFDR) adjusted P < 0.05], respectively. The total (n-6):(n-3) PUFA ratio in plasma exhibited a minor increase from 15.4 ± 2.8 to 16.6 ± 3.1 (pFDR adjusted P < 0.05). These data indicate that short-term vitamin B-6 restriction decreases plasma (n-3) and (n-6) PUFA concentrations and tends to increase the plasma (n-6):(n-3) PUFA ratio. Such changes in blood lipids may be associated with the elevated risk of cardiovascular disease in vitamin B-6 insufficiency.
Zhao M, Lamers Y, Ralat MA, Coats BS, Chi YY, Muller KE, Bain JR, Shankar MN, Newgard CB, Stacpoole PW, Gregory JF 3rd. Marginal Vitamin B-6 Deficiency Decreases Plasma (n-3) and (n-6) PUFA Concentrations in Healthy Men and Women. Journal of Nutrition 2012 October Food Science and Human Nutrition Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences