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Homocysteine, plasma or serum

Lab area
Clinical Biochemistry - General
Method and equipment
Abbott Ci4100
Expected turn-around time
STAT/ Urgent/ Routine: 7 Days
Specimen type

Serum, Lithium Heparin / K-EDTA plasma

Specimen requirements

300 uL

Storage and transportation


Shipping information
The Hospital for Sick Children
Rapid Response Laboratory
555 University Avenue, Room 3642
Toronto, ON
M5G 1X8
Phone: 416-813-7200
Toll Free: 1-855-381-3212
Hours: 7 days/week, 24 hours/day
Background and clinical significance

Homocysteine (HCY) is a thiol-containing amino acid produced by the intracellular demethylation of methionine. Homocysteine accumulates and is excreted into the blood when these reactions are impaired. Impaired homocysteine metabolism results in hyperhomocysteinemia (increased levels of homocysteine in plasma or serum) or homocystinuria (high plasma levels cause homocysteine to be excreted in urine). Hyperhomocysteinemia is caused by nutritional and genetic deficiencies. The majority of elevated homocysteine cases (two-thirds) in the general population are due to deficiency of folic acid, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12. Severely elevated concentrations of total homocysteine are found in subjects with homocystinuria, a rare genetic disorder of the enzymes involved in the metabolism of homocysteine. Studies have investigated the relationship between elevated homocysteine concentrations and cardiovascular disease (CVD), indicating homocysteine as an important marker for risk assessment

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