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General Information

Document type
  • Peer-reviewed journal article
GE organism
  • rice
GE trait
  • quality
  • USA, China


  • positive effect
Safety for consumption
  • no effect

β-Carotene in Golden Rice is as good as β-carotene in oil at providing vitamin A to children

Tang, G; Hu, Y; Yin, SA; Wang, Y; Dallal, GE; Grusak, MA; Russell, RM
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrtion. 2012 August. 96(3):658-664

Link to full text (journal may charge for access)

PMID: 22854406 DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.111.030775 ISSN: 0002-9165


BACKGROUND: Golden Rice (GR) has been genetically engineered to be rich in β-carotene for use as a source of vitamin A. OBJECTIVE: The objective was to compare the vitamin A value of β-carotene in GR and in spinach with that of pure β-carotene in oil when consumed by children. DESIGN: Children (n = 68; age 6-8 y) were randomly assigned to consume GR or spinach (both grown in a nutrient solution containing 23 atom% ²H₂O) or [²H₈]β-carotene in an oil capsule. The GR and spinach β-carotene were enriched with deuterium (²H) with the highest abundance molecular mass (M) at M(β-C)+²H₁₀. [¹³C₁₀]Retinyl acetate in an oil capsule was administered as a reference dose. Serum samples collected from subjects were analyzed by using gas chromatography electron-capture negative chemical ionization mass spectrometry for the enrichments of labeled retinol: M(retinol)+4 (from [²H₈]β-carotene in oil), M(retinol)+5 (from GR or spinach [²H₁₀]β-carotene), and M(retinol)+10 (from [¹³C₁₀]retinyl acetate). RESULTS: Using the response to the dose of [¹³C₁₀]retinyl acetate (0.5 mg) as a reference, our results (with the use of AUC of molar enrichment at days 1, 3, 7, 14, and 21 after the labeled doses) showed that the conversions of pure β-carotene (0.5 mg), GR β-carotene (0.6 mg), and spinach β-carotene (1.4 mg) to retinol were 2.0, 2.3, and 7.5 to 1 by weight, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The β-carotene in GR is as effective as pure β-carotene in oil and better than that in spinach at providing vitamin A to children. A bowl of ~100 to 150 g cooked GR (50 g dry weight) can provide ~60% of the Chinese Recommended Nutrient Intake of vitamin A for 6-8-y-old children.


golden rice, feeding trial, conversion


Funding source
  • USDA
  • NIH
  • National Technology Research and Development Program, China
Funding country
  • United States
  • China
Funding type
  • government

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Cite this study


Tang, G, Y Hu, SA Yin, Y Wang, GE Dallal, MA Grusak, RM Russell. "β-Carotene in Golden Rice is as good as β-carotene in oil at providing vitamin A to children." The American Journal of Clinical Nutrtion 96.3 (2012): 658-664. Web. 28 May. 2024.


Tang, G., Hu, Y., Yin, SA., Wang, Y., Dallal, GE., Grusak, MA., & Russell, RM. (2012). β-Carotene in Golden Rice is as good as β-carotene in oil at providing vitamin A to children. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrtion, 96(3), 658-664. doi:10.3945/ajcn.111.030775

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