Alpha-Amino-N-butyric acid (α-ANB), also known as alphaaminobutyric acid, is a nonessential amino acid derived from the catabolism of methionine, threonine, and serine. α-ANB is both formed and metabolized by reactions which require vitamin B6 as a cofactor.
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Low levels of α-ANB may be seen when overall amino acids are low, especially it’s precursors. Additionally, a functional deficiency in vitamin B6 has been associated with lower levels of α-ANB and levels can increase with B6 supplementation. Clinically, low levels of plasma α-ANB have been associated with depressive symptoms.
Levels of this metabolite may be elevated if its precursors are also elevated. A functional need for vitamin B6 can limit the further metabolism of α-ANB and contribute to elevated levels. Elevations of this metabolite have been studied in several conditions which contribute to a functional vitamin B deficiency, such as alcoholism, sepsis, hypocaloric weight loss, and excessive exercise.
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