Show Summary Details
Page of

Vitamin B7 (biotin) in pregnancy and breastfeeding 

Vitamin B7 (biotin) in pregnancy and breastfeeding
Vitamin B7 (biotin) in pregnancy and breastfeeding

Sir Peter Gluckman

, Mark Hanson

, Chong Yap Seng

, and Anne Bardsley

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 30 July 2021

Biotin is a water-soluble B vitamin (vitamin B7) which acts as a coenzyme to carboxylases and has roles in gluconeogenesis, fatty acid synthesis, and amino acid catabolism. Reduced activity of biotin-dependent enzymes (acetyl-CoA carboxylase I and II, and propionyl-CoA carboxylase) alters lipid metabolism and may impair synthesis of polyunsaturated fatty acids and prostaglandins; in addition, biotin has effects on gene expression by binding covalently to histones. Deficiency can be caused by prolonged consumption of egg whites, which contain the biotin-binding protein avidin. Smoking accelerates the degradation of biotin, which can result in marginal biotin deficiency. The effects of deficiency include disruption of immune function and lipid metabolism, with some evidence of teratogenicity in animals. Dietary deficiency is unlikely, although high consumption of egg whites should be avoided in pregnancy.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.