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Vitamin K2 controls removal of calcium build-up from blood vessels

When people lose kidney function, they must go on dialysis to cleanse the blood of water and waste, but often see calcium build up in blood vessels. Vitamin K2 plays a role in controlling calcium build-up.

Earlier studies found those on dialysis tended to have lower levels of vitamin K2 compared to healthy people. In this study, 50 people on dialysis took 360 mcg of vitamin K2, as menaquinone-7 (MK-7), per day for four weeks.

Doctors measured a protein in the blood called Matrix Gla Protein, or MGP, which inhibits calcium build-up in blood vessels. MGP needs vitamin K to activate this function, but when vitamin K levels are low, MGP becomes inactive.

Doctors found those with high levels of inactive MGP were deficient in vitamin K2 and had more blood vessel calcification. Compared to the start of the study, levels of inactive MGP decreased 86 percent after taking vitamin K2 for four weeks.

 

 

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