Recently, we completed a trial that showed that homocysteine-lowering treatment with B vitamins slows the accelerated in rate of atrophy in people with mild cognitive impairment, and that such treatment may also slow the cognitive decline (PLoS One 2010 8;5:e12244).
Cysteine and fat mass
We have discovered a strong association between cysteine and fat mass, suggesting that this could be an unrecognized cause of obesity (AJCN 2008;88:738-46, J Lipid Res 2010).
Homocysteine measurement in blood
We have developed methods for homocysteine measurement in blood that transformed the field of homocysteine and B vitamin research, and also changed clinical routine practice for assessment of B vitamin deficiency (Clin Chem 1985;31:624-8, Clin Chem 1993;39:263-71, Clin Chem 2004;50:3-32).
Hordaland Homocysteine Study
In 1992, Refsum and her colleagues in Bergen set up the Hordaland Homocysteine Study, now part of the Hordaland Health Studies (JAMA 1995;274:1526-33, J Nutr 2006;136(6 Suppl):1731S-1740S).
Homocysteine as a lifestyle marker
We have contributed to landmark studies related to homocysteine as a lifestyle marker (JAMA 1995;274:1526-33, AJCN 1997;6:136-43, AJCN 1998;67:263-70) and as a risk factor for cardiovascular disease (Lancet 1995;346:1395-8, NEJM 1997;337:230-6, JAMA 1997;277:1775-81 etc).
Vitamin B12 and Indian subcontinent
In the late 1990’s, we found that that vitamin B12 deficiency is very common in the Indian subcontinent (AJCN 2001;74:233-41). More recent data may indicate that low vitamin B12 combined with high folate during pregnancy could be a contributing factor to the high prevalence of fatness and insulin resistance among Indians (Diabetologia 2008;51:29-38).
Homocysteine and Alzheimer's disease
In 1998, we showed that high homocysteine is associated with Alzheimer’s disease (Arch Neurol 1998;55:1449-55), which opened a new field of research.