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Question about forms of folate

Discussion in 'Detox: Methylation; B12; Glutathione; Chelation' started by determined, Apr 14, 2011.

  1. determined

    determined Senior Member

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    USA: Deep South
    Are L-5 methyl-tetrahydrofolate and L-methylfolate the same thing?
  2. rwac

    rwac Senior Member

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    Indeed they are the same thing.
  3. determined

    determined Senior Member

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    USA: Deep South
    Thank you so much rwac. I'm trying to get all of this sorted out.
  4. kerrilyn

    kerrilyn Senior Member

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    Ok, I'm confused because isn't L-5 methyl-tetrahydrofolate also known as Folinic Acid? But Solgar Folate is listed as (L-methylfolate - Metafolin), which is not the same as L-5 methyl-tetrahydrofolate/Folinic Acid.
  5. richvank

    richvank Senior Member

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    Hi, kerrilyn.

    Folinic acid is not the same as L5-methyl tetrafolate. Folinic acid is 5-formyl tetrahydrofolate, also known as leucovorin. The Solgar Metafolin product is L5-methyl tetrahydrofolate. This same substance is sold as FolaPro, Deplin, and MethylMate B.

    Best regards,

    Rich
  6. kerrilyn

    kerrilyn Senior Member

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    Thanks Rich. So one of the differences when looking at the words in the L in front. I ordered a B vitamin with Folate (100 mcg as Calcium Folinate and 100 mcg as 5-Methyl-tetrahydrofolate). So what does it have in it? No L but still Methyl not formyl-tetrahydrofolate. And what is Calcium Folinate?
  7. richvank

    richvank Senior Member

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    Hi, kerrilyn.

    That supplement would have 100 micrograms of folate as a racemic mixture (half L and half R) folinic acid and 100 micrograms of folate probably as a racemic mixture (half L and half R) of methyl-tetrahydrofolate.

    Calcium folinate is the calcium salt of folinic acid. It is a stable form of folinic acid used in supplements. After it is in the body, the calcium separates from the folinate, which becomes folinic acid.

    Concerning the methylfolates, the body uses the left-handed version of the molecule. There is also a right-handed version, sort of a mirror image, that has the same chemical formula, but the bonding between the atoms in the molecule is different. The body only uses the left-handed version. In some cases, when a racemic mixture of a supplement is supplied, the one the body doesn't use can interfere with the biochemistry. I don't know if that occurs with methylfolate, but since I don't know, I prefer to specify the form that the body uses. (You may know that lipoic acid is now available as R-lipoic, which is the form the body uses, as well as alpha lipoic acid, which is the racemic mixture). If an ordinary chemical process is used to make methylfolate, it will come out as half of each chirality, i.e. a racemic mixture of the two forms. This is less expensive to do. Merck Germany has a patent on the production of the L form, and it is sold as Metafolin, FolaPro, and Deplin. Gnosis is now producing this as well, and their product, which they call Extrafolate-S, is what is in Amy Yasko's liquid supplement called MethylMate B, which I recently put into the Simplified protocol, taking out FolaPro, because I think the liquid will be more convenient than having to split tablets, which many people have had to do. There are some "knock-off" products on the market, some coming from China, that contain a racemic mixture. I think there are lawsuits underway about this, because of claims being made that the knock-off is comparable to the L form, which is disputed by makers of the L form.

    For many years, folinic acid has been available as the drug leucovorin, which is a racemic mixture of the two forms of folinic acid as well. More recently, a new drug that contains only the active form of folinic acid (levoleucovorin) has been put on the market. It's not clear whether this is particularly advantageous in the case of folinic acid.

    I hope this helps.

    Best regards,

    Rich
  8. kerrilyn

    kerrilyn Senior Member

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    Thanks Rich! I think I actually understood that - amazing. A nod to new-found clearer thinking that it starting to happen on my part.
    I don't know if I'm someone who has a problem with folates or not, I'm leaning towards not. I've ordered the 23andme genetic test that was on sale. Do you think that will give some insights into that.

    Back to spring cleaning, without crashing... so far....(fingers crossed).

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