(pteroylglutamic acid) a B vitamin that is important in the synthesis of nucleic acids. The metabolic role of folate is interdependent with that of vitamin B12 (both are required by rapidly dividing cells) and a deficiency of one may lead to deficiency of the other. A deficiency of folate results in the condition of megaloblastic anaemia. Good sources of folate are liver, yeast extract, and green leafy vegetables. The actual daily requirement of folate is not known but the suggested daily intake is 200 μg/day for an adult, which should be doubled shortly before conception and during the first three months of pregnancy to prevent neural tube defects (e.g. spina bifida) and other congenital malformations (e.g. cleft lip and cleft palate) in the fetus.
Subjects: Medicine and Health — Chemistry.