Recent study finds possible association between vitamin K2 insufficiency and cognitive impairment

New study finds that vitamin K2 levels can impact cognitive function.

A recent study1 published in Frontiers in Nutrition found a potential association between vitamin K insufficiency and cognitive impairment. In the study, 800 community-dwelling older adults with a mean age of 75.9 were given a comprehensive geriatric health examination that included a Mini Mental State Examination and a blood test. Researchers used concentration of undercarboxylated osteocalcin (ucOC) in serum as a biomarker of vitamin K insufficiency and divided these levels in three tertiles. Then they used binary logistical regression analysis to evaluate the association of cognitive impairment (total MMSE score <27 or 28) with a number of variables that include: age, education, sex, hypertension, streok, heart disease, diabetes, dyslipidemia, osteoporosis, smoking status, body mass index, and ucOC. The analysis was repeated to evaluate association of each category of MMSE (orientation, registration, calculation, recall, and language) with the same variables.

Results showed that the older age, the longer education years (more than 9 years), and the highest tertile of ucOC were significantly associated with cognitive impairment. “As far as we know, this is the first report on the significant association of single ucOC measurement and cognitive impairment,” write the researchers. “Our analysis also suggests that vitamin K insufficiency could be associated with selected categories of cognitive function. Since the single measurement of ucOC in serum is a simple and widely available method for vitamin K evaluation, it could be useful as a biomarker of neurodegenerative diseases affecting the cognitive functions.”

“We have worked with world-renowned researchers – as NattoPharma and that work continues at Gnosis by Lesaffre – to confirm the safe and effective health benefits of MenaQ7 Vitamin K2 as MK-7. Elucidating the important mechanism of activating K-dependent proteins, including osteocalcin and Matrix Gla protein (MGP), was a foundational piece of that work,” explains Hogne Vik, MD, chief medical officer with Gnosis by Lesaffre, who referenced an important 2021 US-based review paper highlighting Vitamin K2 as a potential strategy for Alzheimer’s disease.2 “Based on our research and the critical work that continues, we can hypothesize that K2 supplementation could prove beneficial in the brain development of children and support healthy brain function in adults.”

Reference

  1. Azuma K et al. “Association of vitamin K insufficiency with cognitive dysfunction in community-dwelling older adults.” Frontiers in Nutrition, Published online ahead of print on January 31, 2022, https://doi.org/10.3389/fnut.2021.811831
  2. Popescu A et al. “Vitamin K2 holds promise for Alzheimer’s prevention and treatment.” Nutrients, vol. 13, no. 7 (2021): 2206, doi: 10.3390/nu13072206