Mass analysis of studies shows that Vitamin B6 lowers the risk of colon cancer

March 22, 2010

     The results of a meta-analysis of existing studies published in the Journal of the American Medical Association reveals an association between protection from colorectal cancer and higher blood levels of active Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxal 5’-phosphate or PLP); this is the principle active coenzyme form of vitamin B6.
     “Although vitamin B6 is found in a wide variety of foods, many older people do not obtain an adequate intake of this nutrient,” write Susanna C. Larsson, PhD and coauthors. “In the United States, the prevalence of inadequate vitamin B6 intake for adults older than 50 years is about 20% for men and 40% for women.”
     For their review, Dr Larsson and her colleagues at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm selected 9 studies that evaluated the association between dietary vitamin B6 intake and colorectal cancer risk and 4 studies that evaluated blood PLP levels’ association. Analysis of blood P5P levels uncovered a 48 % risk reduction associated with high versus low levels. Each 100 picomole per milliliter increase in blood PLP was associated with a 49 % reduction in colorectal cancer risk. The research review is published in the March 17, 2010 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).