Folic Acid Supplementation in Children With Sickle Cell Disease

  • End date
    Sep 10, 2022
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University of British Columbia
Updated on 26 January 2022


Folic acid supplementation (1mg/d) is the standard recommendation for Canadian children with Sickle cell disease (SCD), even though it can provide up to six times the recommended intake amount for healthy children. There is growing concern that too much folic acid can be detrimental to health as high folate levels and circulating unmetabolized folic acid (UMFA), which occurs in blood with doses of folic acid as low as 0.2mg/d, have been associated with accelerated growth of some pre-cancerous cells, and altered DNA methylation and gene expression.

To inform the efficacy and potential harm of high-dose folic acid supplementation in Canadian children with SCD, a double-blind randomized controlled cross-over trial is proposed. Children with SCD (n=36, aged 2-19 y) will be recruited from BC Children's Hospital and randomized to initially receive 1 mg/d folic acid or a placebo for 12-weeks (wk). After a 12-wk washout period, treatments will be reversed.


Blood samples will be collected at baseline and 12-wk of each treatment period (weeks 12, 24, and 36).

Serum and RBC concentrations of total folate, different folate forms and clinical outcomes will be measured at baseline and after each treatment period. Dietary folate intake will be assessed at baseline.

The objective of this study is to determine efficacy and potential harm of folic acid supplementation, versus no supplementation, in Canadian children with sickle cell disease.

It is hypothesized that: (1) there will be no difference in mean RBC folate concentrations across folic acid and placebo groups after 12-wk, (2) none of the participants will have folate deficiency, and (3) compared to periods of no supplementation, during periods of high-dose folic acid supplementation participants will show no difference in clinical outcomes, but have higher plasma unmetabolized folic acid concentrations.

Significance: There is a need to determine if the current clinical practice of high-dose folic acid supplementation is efficacious, and warranted.

Condition Anemia, Sickle Cell
Treatment Placebo, Folic Acid Supplement
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT04011345
SponsorUniversity of British Columbia
Last Modified on26 January 2022


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

Individuals with SCD aged 2-19 y attending British Columbia Children's Hospital
Individuals having received routine daily supplementation of folic acid for the prior 12-weeks

Exclusion Criteria

Individuals receiving a blood transfusion in the prior 12-weeks
Individuals allergic to any components of the supplement (cellulose, methylcellulose, magnesium stearate, and/or titanium dioxide)
Individuals presenting with megaloblastic anemia in the prior 12-weeks
Individuals with pulmonary, renal and/or cardiac complications (severe or recurrent acute chest syndrome)
Individuals routinely taking medications known to interfere with B vitamin metabolism (chloramphenicol, methotrexate, metformin, sulfasalazine, phenobarbital, primidone, triamterene, barbiturates)
Individuals who are currently pregnant, planning to become pregnant in the next 9-months, or currently breastfeeding
Individuals who have participated in a clinical research trial in the previous 30 days
Individuals who have donated blood in the previous 30 days
Individuals with unstable medical conditions or unstable laboratory results
Clear my responses

How to participate?

Step 1 Connect with a study center
What happens next?
  • You can expect the study team to contact you via email or phone in the next few days.
  • Sign up as volunteer to help accelerate the development of new treatments and to get notified about similar trials.

You are contacting

Investigator Avatar

Primary Contact



Additional screening procedures may be conducted by the study team before you can be confirmed eligible to participate.

Learn more

If you are confirmed eligible after full screening, you will be required to understand and sign the informed consent if you decide to enroll in the study. Once enrolled you may be asked to make scheduled visits over a period of time.

Learn more

Complete your scheduled study participation activities and then you are done. You may receive summary of study results if provided by the sponsor.

Learn more

Similar trials to consider


Not finding what you're looking for?

Every year hundreds of thousands of volunteers step forward to participate in research. Sign up as a volunteer and receive email notifications when clinical trials are posted in the medical category of interest to you.

Sign up as volunteer

user name

Added by • 



Reply by • Private

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur, adipisicing elit. Ipsa vel nobis alias. Quae eveniet velit voluptate quo doloribus maxime et dicta in sequi, corporis quod. Ea, dolor eius? Dolore, vel!

  The passcode will expire in None.

No annotations made yet

Add a private note
  • abc Select a piece of text from the left.
  • Add notes visible only to you.
  • Send it to people through a passcode protected link.
Add a private note