Higher levels of vitamin B6 pre-operation improve outcomes in colorectal cancer

August 2022 Cancer trials Nalinee Pandey
Vitamin B6 capsule or pill. Dietary supplements. 3d illustration

A recent study suggests that higher pre-operative levels of vitamin B6 are associated with improved survival in colorectal cancer patients (CRC). The study’s findings were recently published in the American Journal of clinical nutrition.

It is well known that elevated levels of vitamin B6 are associated with decreased risk of CRC. However, no systematic study on the effect of the high vitamin B6 on clinical outcomes of CRC patients has been done so far.

Study Design

The international, prospective study enrolled 2031 patients (stage I-III) from the FOCUS folate-dependent 1-carbon metabolism in colorectal cancer recurrence and survival) consortium. Vitamin B6 levels were measured in the preoperative samples, and their association with overall survival (OS), disease-free survival (DFS), disease recurrence etc., were analysed using COX proportional hazards regression.

Main Findings

After a median follow-up of 3.2 years, higher preoperative vitamin B6 was associated with 16-32% higher all causes and DFS. Moreover, the higher levels of B6 were consistently associated with improved OS across CRC tumour sites. However, unlike OS, no association was observed between preoperative vitamin B6 levels and DFS or disease recurrence.


The investigator concluded, “Circulating biomarker concentrations indicating high vitamin B6 status are associated with a reduced risk of CRC.”


Holowatyj AN, Ose J, Gigic B, Lin T, et al. Higher vitamin B6 status is associated with improved survival among patients with stage I-III colorectal cancer. Am J Clin Nutr. 2022 Aug 4;116(2):303-313