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These days, many people in the U.S. are receiving vitamin D tests that show they either have low levels of the nutrient or are deficient. With few vitamin D-enriched food sources available and fears of skin cancer from sun exposure, it can be difficult to get appropriate levels of this vital nutrient.
Now, a new study has shown that it may be possible to engineer bread to have high enough levels of vitamin D to supplement the millions of people who struggle with insufficiency. While this has been proposed for some years, many critics thought that it would be impossible.
Researchers from Purdue University looked into making bread from genetically engineered yeast. The yeast bacteria produces high levels of a certain variety of vitamin D. Some scientists thought that this approach would not work because the type of vitamin D molecules produced by yeast are thought to be less biologically active than other varieties.
However, laboratory testing on mice showed that eating a diet with enriched bread significantly improved vitamin D levels. The researchers said that this could be a simple way to solve the growing epidemic of vitamin D deficiency.
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