Health & Fitness | August 10, 2017 12:25 pm

Breakthrough Study: Vitamin B3 Can Help Prevent Miscarriages and Birth Defects

Australian scientists found vitamin's link to health benefits for expectant mothers and babies.

Vitamin B3
Vitamin B3 could be a vital supplement for expecting moms. (Getty Images)

Move over folate, a different prenatal vitamin is now making worldwide headlines.

A breakthrough study has confirmed B3 supplements can help prevent miscarriages and birth defects. Researchers found a link between healthy babies and a molecule that’s boosted by the vitamin.

Sally Dunwoodie her colleagues, who study genes that impact heart development, at the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute in Sydney, Australia made the discovery. An investigation into mutations caused by nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) deficiencies led to the finding.

According to Science Magazine, NAD is a vital molecule for storing energy and synthesizing DNA in cells. The findings, published Wednesday in The New England Journal of Medicine, show NAD is also a crucial component for bone and organ development in utero.

In the process of determining this, Australian researchers learned that niacin or nicotinamide, known as vitamin B3 when combined, can create alternative pathways for NAD production. Extra vitamin B3 could compensate for any NAD deficiencies expecting mothers might have, Science Magazine reports.

According to ABC News Online, Dunwoodie said, ” it’s the most important discovery for pregnant women since folate,” a commonly recommended prenatal vitamin.