The role of homocysteine in multisystem age-related problems: A systematic review

Hsu K. Kuo, Farzaneh A. Sorond, Jen H. Chen, Ardeshir Hashmi, William P. Milberg, Lewis A. Lipsitz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


Homocysteine is a sulfur-containing amino acid that is involved in one-carbon metabolism. Hyperhomocysteinemia is a common phenomenon among elderly people. There is growing evidence of an association between hyperhomocysteinemia and geriatric multisystem problems, including coronary artery disease, stroke, peripheral vascular disease, cognitive impairment, dementia, depression, osteoporotic fractures, and functional decline. The proposed mechanisms of the association include angiotoxicity, neurotoxicity, and inhibition of collagen cross-linking. A homocysteine-lowering strategy may prevent or slow the development of these age-related problems. Vitamin supplementation and folic acid fortification of grain foods have been shown to decrease plasma homocysteine concentrations. More research is needed to investigate whether lifelong homocysteine lowering can prevent the development of late-life morbidity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1190-1201
Number of pages12
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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