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Vitamin B12 | Laboratory research

Known as: Cobalamin
SKU: 1083


Study material: Venous blood
Response time (working day): 1-2
The test is done on an empty stomach: Yes
Home call service: Yes
Country: Georgia

General Information

Vitamin B12 Belongs to the group of biologically active substances containing cobalt - cobalamins. These include cyanocobalamin itself (vitamin B12), hydroxycobalamin, and two coenzyme forms of vitamin B12: methylcobalamin and 5-deoxyadenosylcobalamin.

Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that plays an extremely important role in the formation of red blood cells, cellular metabolism, the functioning of the nervous system, and the production of DNA.

When should we take the test?

  • Differential diagnostics of macrocytic anemias;
  • Hyperhomocysteinemia;
  • Patients with thrombosis;
  • Chronic inflammatory diseases and anatomical defects of the small intestine, atrophic gastritis;
  • Gastrectomy;
  • Chronic alcoholism;
  • Terminal hip diseases (Crohn's disease, lymphoma, resection);
  • Diagnosis of congenital forms of vitamin B12 deficiency;
  • Monitor the condition with a strict vegetarian diet.

Possible interpretation of the results

Increased concentration of vitamin B12:

  • Liver diseases (acute hepatitis, cirrhosis, liver coma, liver metastases);
  • Renal failure;
  • Heart failure;
  • Diabetes mellitus;
  • Myeloproliferative diseases (acute and chronic myeloid leukemia, erythromyelosis, monocytic leukemia, lymphocytic leukemia);
  • Treatment with vitamin B12.
  • Protein deficiency.

Reduced concentration of vitamin B12:

Insufficient intake of vitamin:

  • A strict vegetarian diet;
  • Diet during phenylketonuria;
  • Low content of vitamin in breast milk;

Malabsorption due to deficiency of internal factor in the gastric mucosa:

  • Pernicious anemia;
  • Total gastrectomy;
  • Toxic damage to the gastric mucosa during chronic alcohol intoxication;

Impaired absorption of vitamin B12 and / or folic acid:

  • Celiac disease;
  • Resection of stomach, small intestine;
  • Infection with Helicobacter pylori;
  • Chronic inflammatory diseases (Crohn's disease, dysbiosis, chronic enteritis);
  • Anatomical defects of the small intestine;
  • Achlorhydria (atrophic gastritis, primary hypothyroidism, HIV infection);
  • Parasitic infestations;
  • Infiltrative diseases;
  • Ileum radiation therapy (lymphomas, scleroderma);
  • Alzheimer's disease;

Hereditary disorders of cobalamin metabolism:

  • Transcobalamin deficiency;
  • Hereditary selective malabsorption of vitamin B12;
  • Hereditary pernicious anemia.

Additional information

Cyanocobalamin is essential for the normal maturation of erythrocytes, it acts as a coenzyme in the synthesis of nucleic acids - DNA and RNA, and methionine. Methionine is essential for the synthesis of folic acid, which provides the normoblastic type of hematopoiesis.

Cyanocobalamin provides the synthesis of lipoproteins in myelin tissue as well as the synthesis of glutathione (hence its deficiency is accompanied by the development of pernicious anemia, neutropenia and neurological disorders).

The specific transcobalamin II transport protein transports cobalamins into the blood plasma. The transcobalamin-cobalamin complex is called holotranscobalamin (HoloTC) or the active vitamin B12. HoloTC makes up only 12-10% of the circulating vitamin B30 in the blood, although it is the only form of vitamin B12 that can be absorbed by the body's cells.

The definition of holotranscobalamin (active vitamin B12) has several advantages:

  • The first early marker indicating early deficiency of vitamin B12 due to a short half-life;
  • Contains biologically available vitamin B12;
  • Low levels of active vitamin B12 indicate a deficiency of vitamin B12, although total vitamin B12 levels may be within the normal range;
  • Provides vitamin B12 delivery to all cells via special receptors;

Vitamin B12 is not produced in the body and therefore should be taken with food. Vitamin is contained in products of animal origin, e.g. Milk, cheese, eggs, meat, mussels and crustaceans.

Vitamin B12 is absorbed in the distal part of the intestine of the thigh, in this case the precondition of absorption is its connection with an internal factor - glycoprotein secreted by the stomach.

Absorption of vitamin B12 usually depends on: 1) the secretion of endogenous factor in the stomach; 2) the integrity of the distal intestinal mucosa; 3) the presence of a sufficient amount of transcobalamin in plasma; 4) the condition of the intestinal microflora (some bacteria may interfere with absorption, as the vitamin is essential for their vital activity). Insufficient absorption in the intestine is a major cause of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Insufficient intake of vitamin B12 from food occurs in the elderly and vegetarians.

Relative deficiencies of vitamin B12 and folic acid may develop during pregnancy due to the body's increased need for these vitamins.

Vitamin B12 deficiency, without treatment, can lead to anemia, fatigue, muscle weakness, intestinal and stomach problems, nerve damage, and changes in mood and cognitive function.


How should we prepare for the test?

Preferably for the test on empty stomach Presence.

The test is recommended before a possible injection of vitamin B12.

It is recommended to limit alcohol intake, smoking and strenuous physical activity for at least 12 hours before the test.

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Testing process

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