North-south gradients in plasma concentrations of B-vitamins and other components of one-carbon metabolism in Western Europe: Results from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) Study

Simone J P M Eussen, Roy M. Nilsen, Oivind Midttun, Steinar Hustad, Noortje Ijssennagger, Klaus Meyer, Åse Fredriksen, Arve Ulvik, Per M. Ueland, Paul Brennan, Mattias Johansson, Bas Bueno-De-Mesquita, Paolo Vineis, Shu Chun Chuang, Marie Christine Boutron-Ruault, Laure Dossus, Florence Perquier, Kim Overvad, Birgit Teucher, Verena A. GroteAntonia Trichopoulou, George Adarakis, Maria Plada, Sabina Sieri, Rosario Tumino, Maria Santucci De Magistris, Martine M. Ros, Petra H M Peeters, Maria Luisa Redondo, Raul Zamora-Ros, Maria Dolores Chirlaque, Eva Ardanaz, Emily Sonestedt, Ulrika Ericson, Jörn Schneede, Bethany Van Guelpen, Petra A. Wark, Valentina Gallo, Teresa Norat, Elio Riboli, Stein Emil Vollset

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    18 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Different lifestyle patterns across Europe may influence plasma concentrations of B-vitamins and one-carbon metabolites and their relation to chronic disease. Comparison of published data on one-carbon metabolites in Western European regions is difficult due to differences in sampling procedures and analytical methods between studies. The present study aimed, to compare plasma concentrations of one-carbon metabolites in Western European regions with one laboratory performing all biochemical analyses. We performed the present study in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort among 5446 presumptively healthy individuals. Quantile regression was used to compare sex-specific median concentrations between Northern (Denmark and Sweden), Central (France, Germany, The Netherlands and United Kingdom) and Southern (Greece, Spain and Italy) European regions. The lowest folate concentrations were observed in Northern Europe (men, 10·4Â nmol/l; women, 10·7Â nmol/l) and highest concentrations in Central Europe. Cobalamin concentrations were slightly higher in Northern Europe (men, 330Â pmol/l; women, 352Â pmol/l) compared with Central and Southern Europe, but did not show a clear north-south gradient. Vitamin B2 concentrations were highest in Northern Europe (men, 22·2Â nmol/l; women, 26·0Â nmol/l) and decreased towards Southern Europe (P trend<Â 0·001). Vitamin B6 concentrations were highest in Central Europe in men (77·3Â nmol/l) and highest in the North among women (70·4Â nmol/l), with decreasing concentrations towards Southern Europe in women (P trend<Â 0·001). In men, concentrations of serine, glycine and sarcosine increased from the north to south. In women, sarcosine increased from Northern to Southern Europe. These findings may provide relevant information for the study of regional differences of chronic disease incidence in association with lifestyle.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)363-374
    Number of pages12
    JournalBritish Journal of Nutrition
    Volume110
    Issue number2
    Early online date11 Dec 2012
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 28 Jul 2013

    Keywords

    • Amino acids
    • B-vitamins
    • Europe
    • One-carbon metabolism

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Medicine (miscellaneous)
    • Nutrition and Dietetics

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