Test to detect pyrroluria, a cause of B6 and zinc deficiency.
Turnaround time: 10-14 days
Location: home or laboratory
What is Pyroluria?
Pyroluria litterally means 'pyrroles in the urine'. Pyroluria is a familial genetic disorder which affects about 10% of the population. Pyrroles are used in the formation of porphyrin, a part of haemoglobin. Kryptopyrrole literally means 'a hidden pyrrole' and is chemically, 2,3 dimethl-3-ethylpyrolle.
Kryptopyrroles bind with vitamin B6 in the blood. The resulting compound then binds with zinc and both nutrients are excreted in the urine - this leads to loss of, and potential chronic deficiency, of these two important nutrients.
For an unidentified reason, pyrolurics (people carrying this genetic trait) create higher levels of kryptopyrroles than the general population. Someone who is pyroluric does not necessarily always produce high levels of kryptopyrroles. It is believed that stress (emotional or physical) can be a trigger which sets off this process. As zinc and B6 are important nutrients for stress support, it becomes more difficult for an individual to bounce back from stress and the cycle of stress/nutrient loss continues.
Why test for pyroluria?
Zinc is required as a coenzyme for over 300 enzymes in the body. Vitamin B6 is also an important nutrient for enzyme function. A shortage of these two nutrients can have a profound impact upon wellbeing. Issues range from skin health, mental health, low mood, low appetite to macrolytic anemia, fertility and low immunity.
Signs and symptoms of Pyroluria
Displaying some of these signs or symptoms does not automatically mean that you have pyroluria. Many of these symptoms correlate with zinc or B6 deficiency which may be a result of dietary intake or poor absorption. A urine test is requird to identify elevated levels of kryptopyrroles.
join or knee pain (poor cartillage formation)
poor would healing
poor dream recall
premature grey hair
crowding of teeth
white spots on nails
loss of appetite
low stress tolerance
What if the result is positive?
The good news is that pyrroluria can be corrected with appropriate supplementation of B6, zinc and sometimes other nutrients, depending on the individual. Once supplemented correctly, levels of kyrptopyrroles normalise and and the excess loss of B6 and zinc is reduced. This doesn’t remove the underlying tendency but seems to correct the issue and result in stabilisation. Ongoing testing to monitor, as well as supplementation of B6 and zinc is recommended.