Pyroluria is characterized by elevated levels of kryptopyrrole in the urine, which can lead to a high deficiency of zinc and vitamin B6.
Kryptopyrrol (also known as purple agent or hydroxyhemopyrrolin-2-one (HPL)) belongs to the group of pyrroles, which are substances that are synthesized during the production of hemoglobin in the body and are considered a by-product of hemoglobin synthesis. Small amounts of pyrrole form normally in all humans, but some individuals (with a specific genetic background) tend to produce very large amounts of pyrroles. Because pyrroles have a high chemical affinity for vitamin B6 and zinc, they bind these substances and are excreted together in the urine. Thus, the increased synthesis and elimination of pyrrole in the urine is accompanied by an increase in the elimination of vitamin B6 and zinc, resulting in the symptomatology of pyroluria being practically related to the deficiency of these two substances.
Zinc and vitamin B6 deficiency has a direct effect on the functioning of the nervous system and the brain. For this reason, pyroluria is closely associated with neurological and psychiatric disorders such as:
- Bipolar disorder
- Down syndrome
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Muscle twitching
- Abnormal function of motor neurons
Recent studies have linked an increase in kryptopyrrole to other conditions, such as increased plasma histamine, allergies, immune system disorders, and intestinal dysbiosis. In addition to reducing zinc and vitamin B6, high levels of kryptopyrrole cause a decrease in the levels of vitamins C and B3 (niacin) as well as serotonin.
Restoring the levels of vitamins and minerals that are lacking, improves patients' symptoms while reducing the levels of kryptopyrrole in patients' urine.