Pantothenic acid is a probable building block for the vitaletheine modulators and related compounds.
Since pantothenic acid is absorbed in the small intestine and some is synthesized by E. coli, it may be conspicuously deficient in individuals suffering from diarrhea and intestinal infections and disorders.
Deficiencies of either riboflavin or pantothenic acid are associated with an involution (degenerative shriveling) of the thymus. This lymphoid organ is necessary for the proper maturation of T-cells and cell-mediated immune function. It is interesting that deficiencies in either riboflavin or pantothenic acid also will increase the background formation of hemolytic plaques, a measure of cytolytic antibody formation. Could this be a compensating mechanism for decreased humoral responses when the vitaletheine modulators and monooxygenase activities are limited nutritionally?
Pantothenic acid has long been known to be essential for consistent antibody production, for the production of diphtheria toxoid and hemagglutinating antibodies, and for vaccinations against tetanus, typhoid, or Asian influenza.
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