Severe hyperhomocysteinemia (HHC) is associated with atherosclerosis. In hemodialysis (HD) patients, one of the main causes of death is cardiovascular disease. In animals, trace elements such as cobalt, copper, iron, and nickel ameliorated vitamin B12 deficiency-induced HHC. However, correlations between plasma total homocysteine (tHcy) and trace elements in HD patients have not been investigated. Therefore, tHcy, folate, vitamin B12, trace elements (cobalt, copper, iron, and nickel), and some laboratory parameters such as serum total protein, albumin, transferrin, ferritin, C-reactive protein (CRP), and interleukin-6 concentrations were determined in 122 hemodialysis patients. When patients were divided into groups according to their tHcy, we found no significant differences in concentrations of cobalt, copper, and total protein, while nickel was higher, and folate, vitamin B12, and iron were lower in patients with lower than higher tHcy. In univariate regression analysis, tHcy negatively correlated with concentrations of folate (r∈=∈-0.302, p∈<∈0.006), vitamin B12 (r∈=∈-0.347, p∈<∈0.0001), nickel (r∈=∈-0.289, p∈<∈0.006), and CRP (r∈=∈-0.230, p∈<∈0.02) and positively with serum albumin (r∈=∈0.316, p∈<∈0.0004) and hemoglobin (r∈=∈0.329, p∈<∈0.0001) values. No relationship between tHcy and serum concentrations of cobalt, copper, iron, or other laboratory parameters was found in HD patients. The effect of cobalt and nickel on homocysteine production was assessed in human peripheral mononuclear cells (PBMCs). Nickel but not cobalt at concentrations found in HD patients significantly inhibited homocysteine, cysteine, and S-adenosylhomocysteine production in human PBMCs. These results suggest that nickel might also be involved in the regulation of the methionine-folate cycle in humans, as was demonstrated in animal experiments.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical
- Inorganic Chemistry