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EFSA issues dietary reference value opinions for biotin and pantothenic acid

By Nathan Gray+


EFSA has issued new guidance on the adequate intake (AI) levels for the B vitamins biotin and pantothenic acid at 40 µg per day and 5 mg per day, respectively.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has issued two scientific opinions relating to the B vitamins pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) and biotin (vitamin B7), with the science agency recommending an AI of 5 mg per day for pantothenic acid and 40 µg per day for biotin.

Writing in EFSA Journal, the EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA Panel), said that there was insufficient evidence available to derive an Average Requirement (AR) or Population Reference Intake for either of the vitamins, therefore meaning that the AI was proposed.

Pantothenic acid

The NDA Panel set the AI for pantothenic acid for adults at 5 mg per day, noting that there is no indication that the AI should differ according to sex.

“The setting of AIs is based on observed pantothenic acid intakes with a mixed diet and the apparent absence of signs of deficiency in the EU, suggesting that current intake levels are adequate,” said the Panel.

They added that the level for adults also applies to pregnant women, but noted that for lactating women an AI of 7 mg per day is proposed – adding that this is to compensate for pantothenic acid losses through breast milk.

“For infants over six months, an AI of 3 mg/day is proposed by extrapolating from the pantothenic acid intake of exclusively breast-fed infants aged zero to six months,” the scientific opinion states. “The AIs for children and adolescents are set at 4 and 5 mg/day, respectively, based on observed intakes in the EU.

The full scientific opinion can be found here .


For biotin, EFSA said that the AI for adults and pregnant women should be set at 40 µg per day – adding that for lactating women an additional 5 µg/day over and above the AI for adults is proposed.

For infants over six months, an AI of 6 µg/day is proposed while the AIs for children aged 1 to 3 and 4 to 10 years are set at 20 and 25 µg per day, respectively, and for adolescents at 35 µg/day, based on observed intakes in the EU.

In adult men and women below about 65 years, mean/median intakes ranged from 26 to 50 µg/day, while mean/median intakes between 24 and 43 µg/day were reported for older adult men and women,” the Panel found.

The full scientific opinion can be found here .

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