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Vitamin Research In Brief

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Vitamin B does not slow Alzheimer's: High doses of vitamin B do not slow cognitive decline in people with Alzheimer's disease, even though it reduced the level of homocysteine, an amino acid linked to the risk of dementia, according to a study in the October Journal of the American Medical Association. Researchers led by Paul Aisen, of the University of California, San Diego's Department of Neurosciences, found that homocysteine levels of participants who took daily supplements of 5 mg folic acid, 1 mg vitamin B12 and 25 mg vitamin B6 dropped 2.42 umol/L on average after 18 months compared to a 0.86 umol/L drop in those who took a placebo. This did not correspond to a drop in dementia. Cognitive scores were the same for both groups. However, more supplemented participants (67 out of 240, or 28 percent) experienced "an excess of adverse events related to depression," compared to 30 out of 169 (18 percent) in the control group

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