Folate may be photodegraded in the presence of triplet-excited riboflavin and other flavins. A number of problems may arise as a result..


Consequences of prolonged light exposure, especially in the presence of UVA and blue portion of the visible spectrum:

(1) deterioration of both folate and riboflavin in parenteral nutrition solutions, resulting in decreased supplementation

(2) deterioration of folate in serum samples, resulting in a falsely low serum concentration

(3) possible in vivo deterioration of folate sufficient to cause folate deficiency, especially in a patient with marginal body stores



(1) Parenteral nutrition solutions should be shielded from bright and/or prolonged light exposures.

(2) Blood samples should be shielded from prolonged and intense light exposure.

(3) Prolonged exposure to intense light in theory could induce folic acid deficiency in a patient who is malnourished or who has marginal folate stores.


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