Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Vitamin B12 is essential for 1-carbon metabolism and cell division. Deficiency is a major public health issue and is widespread with estimates suggesting that as much as 20% of the elderly population may be deplete in B12.


Deficiency of Vitamin B12 has been associated with neurodegenerative disease, probably because low vitamin B12 causes elevation of homocysteine, which is known to be a risk factor in Alzheimer’s Disease.

Among other population groups at risk are pregnant women and their offspring, vegetarians and vegans and patients with intestinal diseases. Those taking H2 antagonists and proton pump inhibitors are also at risk due to the effect on absorption of Vitamin B12.

Identification of B12 deficiency is notoriously difficult. Haematological signs and symptoms may be absent or non-specific. Neurological symptoms may be the only manifestation of deficiency and can be irreversible if treatment is delayed. Early and accurate detection of vitamin B12 deficiency is therefore important.

Our patented assay for the measurement of ACTIVE-B12 (Holotranscobalamin) offers improved performance over existing assays for the assessment of Vitamin B12 status and is¬†exclusively¬†available from Axis-Shield and it’s licensed partners.


More information on Active-B12 can be found at