What is Biotin?
Biotin is a water-soluble B-complex vitamin and it is essential for all organisms. Although Biotin is found in all organisms, every organism is not able to synthesize it. Biotin is only synthesized by Bacteria, yeast, molds, algae, and some plants (Higdon and Drake, 2012). Humans get Biotin through food or dietary supplements. It binds to protein in our food, or can be found in free-form.
Although it is essential, Biotin is not needed in large amounts. The FDA has not even set a recommended amount of intake, because it is assumed that we consume enough through food.
The adequate Biotin intake is 30 micrograms per day. Pregnant women require a little more of it. Research has found that it is more rapidly broken down during pregnancy. Biotin deficiency is not very common, however, when it occurs and can cause symptoms such as skin rash, hair loss, and brittle nails.
Biotinylation is the process in which a Biotin molecule is bonded to another molecule, usually a protein. In histone Biotinylation, the biotin molecule is attached to a histone and aides in the reaction that results in histone modification. Biotindase is the enzyme that catalyzes the release of biotin from the protein it is bound to, whether it is bound to food to be released, or bound to a protein in the body to be released.
Biotin acts as a cofactor for five carboxylases that catalyze important pathways in the body.
- Acetyl CoA carboxylase alpha and beta (ACCα) and (ACCβ)
- Both forms of this enzyme assist in the carboxylation of Acetyl- CoA to malonyl-CoA.
- Pyruvate carboxylase (PC)
- An enzyme in the mitochondria that catalyzes the conversion of pyruvate to oxaloacetate in the process of gluconeogenesis..
- Methylcrotonyl – CoA carboxylase (MCC)
- This enzyme is involved in processing the amino acid, Leucine, via the carboxylation of the carbon that is located next to the carbonyl group on the amino acid.
- Propionyl – CoA carboxylase (PCC)
- This is the enzyme that catalyzes the carboxylation of propionyl-CoA to methyl malonyl-CoA
Most food does not contain much Biotin if any. The foods with the most amount of Biotin include:
- Liver = 27-35 micrograms per 3 oz. of liver meat.
- Egg yolk = 13-25 micrograms per large egg.
- Yeast = 1.4-14 micrograms per packet of yeast.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is an abundant protein found in the skin, bone, and tendon. It makes up about 25% of the protein content of the body. This fibrous protein has a triple-stranded helix structure. Assembly starts with a single stranded collagen polypeptide chain, three of these strands form the triple strand helix. Then, the triple strands are wound together with histones to form a long, thick, and stiff collagen fibril. This fibril is not the final piece of assembly, the fibrils are then wound together to form an even thicker collagen fiber. In bone collagen is synthesized by connective tissue called osteoblasts. In skin and tendon collagen is synthesized by fibroblasts. Collagen molecules are synthesized in their respective connective tissues and then they are excreted into the extracellular matrix where they bind together in form the thick collagen fibers. Procollagen proteinases are enzymes in the extracellular enzymes that cut the collagen fiber to make sure that there are assembling correctly. If those enzymes are defective, “the collagen fibrils would not assembly correctly” (Alberts, Bruce. 2014) and there will be a significant decrease in tensile strength in the connective tissues. Extremely stretchy skin can be a result of incorrect assembly of collagen fibers. Collagen is synthesized in the body, however, there are certain foods that can help to restore, repair, and protect collagen fibers.
- Foods high in vitamin A help repair collagen
- Sweet Potatoes
- Foods high in Omega-3 help to protect the skin cells and in turn, protect the collagen structures. Fish is an excellent source of Omega-3.
Similarities between Collagen and Biotin
Biotin and Collagen are very different molecules. They have different structures, synthesis pathways, and wildly different functions. However, there are a few similarities between the two.
- Both are commonly associated with healthy skin.
- Both have medical applications.
- There are collagen rich foods, and Biotin rich foods.
Difference between Collagen and Biotin
There are plenty of differences between these two molecules, from structure to function to how they are synthesized and who is even able to synthesize it.
- Collagen is a protein.
- Biotin is a vitamin.
- Biotin is not synthesized by the body.
- Collagen has 20 genes coding for its various forms.
- Biotin is found in food or dietary supplements.
- Collagen is found in connective tissue (in the extracellular matrix).
- Biotin is synthesized by bacteria in the large intestine
- Collagen is synthesized in the extracellular matrix of connective tissue
Biotin vs Collagen
Biotin and collagen are both required for all organisms, even if they cannot synthesize it themselves. There are many more differences than similarities when it comes to these two molecules. Biotin is a vitamin, and Collagen is a protein. Both molecules have been associated with healthy skin and are in use for cosmetic reasons. Biotin, in relation to healthy skin, is not based on concrete evidence of its effectiveness. Biotin deficiency has been linked to
- Brittle Nails
- Loss of hair
- Facial and/or genital skin rash
Collagen needs to aggregate correctly to avoid the associated skin abnormalities.