Donald M Mock

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Departments of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and Pediatrics, Little Rock, AR

Although frank symptomatic biotin deficiency is rare, some evidence suggests that marginal biotin deficiency occurs spontaneously in a substantial proportion of women during normal human pregnancy and might confer an increased risk of birth defects. Herein I review 1) advances in assessing biotin status, including the relation between acylcarnitine excretion and biotin status; 2) recent studies of biotin status in pregnancy; 3) advances in understanding the role of biotin in
gene expression and the potential roles of biotinylated proteins that are neither histones nor carboxylases; and 4) novel large-dose biotin supplementation as therapy for multiple sclerosis. The review concludes with a summary of recent studies that have reported potentially dangerous erroneous results in individuals consuming large amounts of biotin for measurements of various plasma hormones for common clinical assays that use streptavidin-biotin technology. J Nutr 2017;147:1487–92.

 biotin, nutritional supplements, interference, hormone assays, gene expression, multiple sclerosis