Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

The effect of vitamin B-6 supplementation on lymphocyte responsiveness in independently-living elderly persons

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  • The effect of pyridoxine (PN) supplementation on lymphocyte responsiveness was investigated in 15 elderly volunteers (aged 65-81 years) by measuring lymphocyte proliferation to T and B cell mitogens, lymphocyte subpopulations with monoclonal antibodies (T3, T4, T8) and plasma pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP) concentration at pre-supplementation and after 1 and 2 months of daily supplementation. Eleven subjects received 50mg of PN-HC1 and 4 received a placebo. Dietary histories were also evaluated for Intake of vitamin B-6, protein and kilocalories. Mitogens used for the stimulation of lvmphocyte proliferation were phytohemagglutinin (PHA), concanavalln A (Con A), pokeweed mitogen (PWM), and Staphylococcus aureus Cowain I (SAC). Plasma PLP was measured by a radio tracer method. Before supplementation, mean PLP of the 15 subjects was 31.7 +/- 14.1 nM; 5 PN and 3 placebo treated subjects had low PLP levels. After 1 and 2 months of PN-HCl supplementation, the PLP levels Increased by 195 +/-88 nM and 201 +/-84 nM, respectively. Lymphocyte proliferation In response to PHA, PWM, and SAC Increased significantly (p < 0.05) with PN supplementation. Among PN-treated subjects, Ivmpbocyte blaatogenesls was significantly greater In response to Con A and PWM in individuals whose initial PLP was low. Percentages of T3+ and T4+, but not T8+ cells increased significantly In PN-treated individuals. These results suggest that vitamin B-6 status is important in maintaining immunocompetence in the elderly.
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