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The generic descriptor vitamin B6 includes six vitamers: the alcohol pyridoxine, the aldehyde pyridoxal, the amine pyridoxamine, and their 5′-phosphates. There is some confusion in the older literature, because at one time “pyridoxine,” which is now used specifically for the alcohol, was used as a generic descriptor, with “pyridoxol” as the specific name for the alcohol. The vitamers are metabolically intercon-vertible and, as far as is known, they have equal bio-logical activity; they are all converted in the body to the metabolically active form, pyridoxal phosphate. 4-Pyridoxic acid is a biologically inactive end-product of vitamin B6 metabolism.
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