Homocysteine remethylation pathway in neonates with congenital heart disease and neural tube defects
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Department of Neonatology, School of Medicine in Katowice, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland
Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, School of Medicine in Katowice, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland
Corresponding author
Piotr Surmiak   

Department of Neonatology, School of Medicine in Katowice, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, ul. Medyków 14, 40-752 Katowice, Poland
Ann. Acad. Med. Siles. 2018;72:134-140
The etiology of congenital heart defects (CHD) and neural tube defects (NTD) remain unknown, however, the relation between homocysteine and folate levels and congenital anomalies were found. With this perspective in mind, the aim of the study was to investigate serum biomarkers of the homocysteine metabolism pathway in neonates with CHD, newborns with NTD and their mothers.

Material and methods:
Twenty-nine pairs of mothers and their neonates with CHD as well as 18 pairs of mothers and neonates with NTD were enrolled in the study. The control group consisted of 54 pairs of mothers and their healthy neonates. To estimate the total homocysteine, serum folic acid and vitamin B12 levels in plasma, mothers’ venous blood samples and umbilical cord blood were taken in the all groups.

There were significantly higher tHcy levels in the newborns with CHD compared to their mothers. The total homocysteine levels in the CHD neonates were noticeably different compared to the neonates with NTD and to the controls. The vitamin B12 levels were similar in all the investigated neonates. Significantly lower umbilical folic acid levels in the NTD and CHD groups as compared to the controls were noticed.

The observed differences in concentrations of homocysteine, folic acid and cobalamin between neonates with congenital heart and neural tube defects suggest the influence of various agents disturbing the homo-cysteine metabolic pathways in those children.

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