Vitamin B12 has a unique and complicated absorption pathway that, to be functional, requires the vitamin to bind to intrinsic factor, a protein that is produced by parietal cells in the stomach. The inability to absorb vitamin B12 leads to a deadly condition, known as pernicious anemia. The current method of diagnosing B12 malabsorption, the Schilling urinary excretion test, is no longer used because it requires the use of radioactive vitaminB12, which exposes patients and workers to radioactivity as well as requiring storage of the radioisotope before the test and radioactive human waste after the test. As a result, malabsorption of vitamin B12 is now only inferred using indirect tests. Moreover, there is now no method available to scientists and clinicians for generating population statistics for vitamin B12 absorption in population subgroups, such as the aging or indigenousgroups. These statistics are sought after, as they will provide a better understanding of vitamin B12 -related diseases and their early diagnosis and efficacy of treatments.Here we propose to develop a new, non-radioactive test for vitamin B12 absorption in human that will fill the need for a safe clinical test, as well as a research tool to provide the missing statistical data on B12 absorption/malabsorption in various populations. The proposed new test uses a specific, heavy isotope of the carbon atoms in the dimethylbenzimidazole moiety of vitamin B12 with a mass shift of M+7 over standard vitamin B12. The mass shift of B12 M+7 would, in theory, allow the uptake of around 1 microgram of heavy vitamin B12 to be directly detected by standard HPLC/Mass spectrometry, after entering the bloodstream of a healthy, normal adult.
|Qualification||Master of Philosophy|
|Place of Publication||Australia|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|