Impact of biofortified maize consumption on serum carotenoid concentrations in Zambian children

Amanda C. Palmer, Neal E. Craft, Kerry J. Schulze, Maxwell Barffour, Justin Chileshe, Ward Siamusantu, Keith P. West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Biofortified maize, designed as an intervention strategy to prevent vitamin A deficiency, can provide upwards of 15 ?g ?-carotene per g dry weight. Some varieties also have elevated concentrations of other carotenoids. We conducted a cluster randomized, controlled feeding trial in rural Zambia to test the impact of daily consumption of biofortified maize over a 6-month period on vitamin A status. Serum concentrations of retinol and carotenoids were assessed by high-performance liquid chromatography. Data on circulating carotenoids by intervention group in 679 children are reported here. As previously shown, consumption of this ?-carotene-rich maize significantly improved serum ?-carotene concentrations (0.273 vs. 0.147 ?mol/L, p o 0.001, in this subset of children). Here we show significant increases in ?-carotene, ?-cryptoxanthin, and zeaxanthin (p o 0.001). There was no impact on lutein or lycopene concentrations. Consumption of biofortified maize can have broader implications beyond the control of vitamin A deficiency (Trial registration: NCT01695148).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-303
Number of pages3
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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