What is Alpha-Amino-n-butyric acid?

Alpha-Amino-n-butyric acid (A-ANB/α-Amino-N-butyric acid) is an intermediate occurring in the catabolism of two essential amino acids, methionine and threonine.

Alpha-Amino-n-butyric acid high low meaning treatment genova healthmatters

High levels:

Inadequate utilization of this amino acid for cellular energy generation. α-Amino-N-butyric acid is converted to succinyl Co-A for use in the citric acid cycle via mechanisms requiring biotin (Vit B7) and B12.

Elevated A-ANB can be secondary to elevations of either (methionine or threonine). No metabolic error specific to A-ANB is documented. Anecdotal evidence relates elevated A-ANB to vitamin B6 deficiency and to adrenocortical excess or use of corticosteroid medications.

Via alpha-ketobutyric acid, A-ANB becomes propionic acid, and this transformation requires thiamin, vitamin B2 as FAD, B3 as NAD, lipoic acid and magnesium. Deficiencies in these nutrients as well as vitamin B6 could cause A-ANB to accumulate.

An elevated marker can also indicate alcoholism.

Low levels:

Possible increased need for the nutrients which aid in threonine metabolism from which this AA is derived. These include α-KG and B6.

Possible treatment if low: 

Supplement with vitamin B6 and alpha-ketoglutarate.


The information on is NOT intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

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