DNA methylation changes in whole blood and CD16+ neutrophils in response to chronic folic acid supplementation in women of child-bearing age
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The aim of this study was to determine if DNA methylation in a single leukocyte type would respond differently than whole blood (WB) in response to folic acid (FA) supplementation. This study was performed in normal weight women (18-35 y; n = 12), with blood samples taken before and after 8 weeks of supplementation with 800 μg/day of FA. DNA methylation patterns from WB and CD16+ neutrophils (CD16) were measured across 485,000 CpG sites. We identified 7839 and 8317 sites that changed (P<0.05) in WB and CD16, respectively with decreases in methylation in 77.2% (WB) and 65.6% (CD16) of these sites. These results suggest that the genome-wide DNA methylation response to FA supplementation is different in WB and CD16. Future studies should measure DNA methylation response to FA supplementation in other leukocyte types to determine if a single cell type could act as a more reliable epigenetic reporter than WB.