Does the bioavailability of β-Carotene (β-C) change with aging?

E. P. Norkus, R. O. Russell, M. Kanagala, Z. Asfaw, Rajendran, J. Sawhney, T. S. Dharmarajan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recently, we presented data that suggested a negative relationship between daily use of multivitamins (containing β-C) and serum β-C values in the elderly. The present study compared the relative bioavailability of β-C between elderly (E) and non-elderly (NE) subjects during a 14-day β-C supplementation trial (1 x 15 mg OTC capsule of β-C /day). Prior to supplementation, the 9 E subjects (75 ± 4 yr. 4 females & 5 males) and 20 NE subjects (34 ± 8 yr, 10 females & 10 males) had statistically similar serum β-C levels [15.1 ± 0.8 (SD) μg/dL for NE vs. 16.3 ± 1.2 (SD) μg/dL for E]. β-C supplementation significantly raised fasting serum β-C levels (P<0.0001) in both NE and E volunteers. Following β-C supplementation, no significant difference in mean serum values, absolute change in serum level, percent change in serum level, area under the serum curve (AUC), expressed as AUC or AUC standardized by body mass index, body fat, or lean body mass was observed between the NE and E volunteers. These findings suggest that β-C bioavailability is not impaired in healthy, cognitively normal, community elderly compared to younger adults. Aging, per se, does not appear to alter bioavailability of β-C in the healthy individual.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)A877
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 20 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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