Background: Folate is important for DNA biosynthesis and many metabolic processes. Folate deficiency can cause macrocytic anemia, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and breast cancer. Several folate are commercially available, including synthetic versions such as folic acid and natural forms, such as that found in the alga chlorella. The enzyme 5, 10-methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) polymorphisms C677T are associated with Alzheimer’s disease, neural tube defects and CVD. Objective: To study the influence of Chlorella pyrenoidosa on individuals carrying the MTHFR C677T polymorphism. Methods: Seven outpatients from Yoko Clinic (3 males, 4 females; 12–52 years) were enrolled. Three individuals carried the mutant homozygous genotype TT (TT), three were heterozygous genotype CT (CT). We conducted biochemical tests on peripheral blood taken before and during the 3 months when study subjects took 3g of Chlorella pyrenoidosa daily. Results: Overall, blood samples showed a tendency of negative correlation between folate and homocysteine levels before the study. The TT had a tendency toward low folate before taking chlorella (TT 5.53 ng/ml, CT 14.13 ng/ml) and the levels for the TT increased after taking chlorella (6.73 ng/ml). Two young female subjects who had started menstruating showed increased iron levels (before 58.5 mmg/dl, after 119 mmg/dl). One hyperlipidemic individual had a decrease in total cholesterol (before 305 mg/dl, after 256 mg/dl). Conclusion: Cases in the TT group tended to have low serum concentrations of folate. Overall, the natural product chlorella might have beneficial influences for enhancing metabolism of folate and other nutrients by individuals with MTHFR polymorphisms.
Yoko Uchiyama-Tanaka, Masaki Fujishima, Eri Okumura, Yoko Clinic, Sun Chlorella Corp
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