Nicotinamide (Vitamin B3)

Nicotinamide is a form of Vitamin B3 that may preserve and improve beta cell function. Nicotinamide is essential for growth and conversion of foods to energy. It has been used in diabetes treatment and prevention. Potential side effects include headache, skin and GI effects, exacerbation of gout and ulcers, as well as allergies. Liver and platelet function should be monitored. It may increase serum concentrations of the anticonvulsants, carbamazepine and primidone.

Nicotinamide (niacinamide) is one of the two principal forms of the B-complex vitamin niacin (see Niacin). The term niacin is used as a collective term to refer to both nicotinamide and nicotinic acid, the other principal form of niacin, or the term is used synonymously with nicotinic acid. Nicotinamide and nicotinic acid have identical vitamin activities, but they have very different pharmacological activities.

Nicotinamide, via its major metabolite NAD++ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide), is involved in a wide range of biological processes, including the production of energy, the synthesis of fatty acids, cholesterol and steroids, signal transduction and the maintenance of the integrity of the genome. Nicotinic acid, in pharmacological doses, is used as an antihyperlipidemic agent. It also causes vasodilation of cutaneous blood vessels resulting in the so-called niacin flush. Nicotinamide in pharmacological doses does not have antihyperlipidemic activity, nor does it cause a niacin-flush. There is evidence, however, that pharmacological doses of nicotinamide may prevent type 1 diabetes mellitus. And, interestingly, pyrazinamide, an important drug in the treatment of tuberculosis, is an analogue of and shares the same biochemical mechanism with nicotinamide.

Nicotinamide, in addition to being known as niacinamide, is also known as 3-pyridinecarboxamide, pyridine-3-carboxamide, nicotinic acid amide, vitamin B3 and vitamin PP. Nicotinamide may have anti-diabetogenic activity in some. It may also have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic activities. Nicotinamide has putatitive activity against osteoarthritis and granuloma annulare.

Chemical Name: Pyridine-3-Carboxyamide
Molecular formula: C6H6N2O
Molecular weight: 122.13
CAS No.: 98-92-0