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    Very little research has been done on boron and little is known about the symptoms of boron deficiency. Following we piece together a picture that indicates that boron is essential for magnesium and calcium metabolism, and is probably involved in estrogen and testosterone metabolism. There are a lot of reasons to suspect that a boron deficiency is involved in hyperthyroidism.

    The following study suggests that boron works with magnesium and this may be one reason that it benefits persons with hyperthyroidism or persons with thyroid disease who are experiencing low magnesium symptoms like rapid heart rate and muscle cramping. You will note that boron both lessens the effects of a low magnesium diet but exacerbates deficiency symptoms. These seem to be the typical characteristics of when one nutrient works with another. Boron thus seems essential for magnesium metabolism and administration of boron will lower magnesium levels because it is enabling more of the magnesium to be utilized. 
Another interesting observation in this study is that fructose mimics a magnesium deficiency, which reminds me of the studies on copper deficiency which showed that the symptoms of copper-deficiency are worse if the animal is also consuming fructose. We have seen that hypers have increased symptoms after eating fruit and this effect may be due to fructose increasing copper-deficiency symptoms. It would be very interesting to know how this fructose effect works--perhaps not by increasing copper deficiency itself but because it works like copper-deficiency in increasing the magnesium deficiency effects.

Magnes Res 2000 Mar;13(1):19-27 t

Magnesium deficiency in the rat: effects of fructose, boron and copper.

Kenney MA, McCoy JH

School of Human Environmental Sciences, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville 72701, USA.

Magnesium (Mg) participates in many biochemical reactions which involve a variety of other nutrients. To elucidate some nutrient interactions, fructose (FR) and starch (ST) were compared as carbohydrate sources, and boron (B) and copper (Cu) were added to low-Mg diets for young male rats. Lack of Mg always caused characteristic deficiency symptoms. FR resembled Mg deficiency in effects on body, liver, and kidney weights and on plasma cholesterol level, but did not affect serum Mg or calcium (Ca). FR effects apparently were not mediated by changes in plasma Mg and Ca concentrations and were not prevented by adding Cu. Boron appeared to lessen effects of a low-Mg diet on body growth, serum cholesterol, and ash concentration in bone, but exacerbated deficiency symptoms, without affecting the concentration of Mg or Ca in serum. Results suggest that increased FR intake and marginal B might adversely affect individuals whose Mg status is suboptimal.

The following study, although enigmatic, appears to show that boron may affect thyroid function and the levels of T4 and T3.
Vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult 1989 May-Jun;(3):28-31

[Morphofunctional characteristics of the thyroid and a change in the level of thyroid hormones in the blood from the internal use of boron-containing waters].

[Article in Russian]

Korolev IuN, Panova LN, Bobkova AS, Korovkina EG

It has been established that intake of waters identical by Br concentrations (250 mg/l) but different by an ion-salt base leads to various structural changes of the thyroid at the tissue, cellular and subcellular levels. Artificial Br-containing water induces more pronounced shifts correlating with T3 and T4, blood concentrations. The ion-salt base was found essential in the mechanism of action of Br-containing water.
The following study shows that boron supplementation in males can increase estradiol (estrogen) and testosterone levels. This suggests that boron is involved in the conversion of progesterone into estradiol and testosterone. Since we have seen that hypers often have high progesterone levels and low estradiol levels (testosterone levels not known), this study offers more evidence that a boron deficiency may be involved in hyperthyroidism.
Biol Trace Elem Res 1997 Mar;56(3):273-86

The effect of boron supplementation on its urinary excretion and selected cardiovascular risk factors in healthy male subjects.

Naghii MR, Samman S

Department of Biochemistry, University of Sydney, NSW, Australia.

Boron (B) is an essential trace element for plants and its interrelationship with mineral and bone metabolism and endocrine function in humans has been proposed. Relatively little is known about the occurrence of B in the food chain and hence a biomarker which reflects its intake is required. Two studies were carried out to quantify the urinary B concentration of subjects consuming their habitual diet and the effect of supplementation. In addition, the effect of supplementation on plasma lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations and susceptibility to oxidation and plasma steroid hormones were determined. Boron excretion, obtained on two different occasions from 18 healthy male subjects, was found to be in the range 0.35-3.53 mg/day, with no significant difference between the two occasions. Supplementation with 10 mg B/d for 4 wk resulted in 84% of the supplemented dose being recovered in the urine. Plasma estradiol concentrations increased significantly as a result of supplementation (51.9 +/- 21.4 to 73.9 +/- 22.2 pmol/L; p < 0.004) and there was a trend for plasma testosterone levels to be increased. However, there was no difference in plasma lipids or the oxidizability of low-density lipoprotein. Our studies suggest that the absorption efficiency of B is very high and estimation of the urinary B concentration may provide a useful reflection of B intake. In addition, the elevation of endogenous estrogen as a result of supplementation suggests a protective role for B in atherosclerosis.
The following study indicates that boron is involved in cognitive performance. Because of the observed decreases in mental functioning in thyroid disease it's important to consider all nutrients which may be involved in brain function. Also note that boron may be involved  in membrane function. Since boron is a light element and many of the lighter elements are involved in the passage of the heavier elements through the cell walls, boron's function may be involved in this process. We have seen that other light elements like lithium perform functions regulating the passage of heavier elements like copper into the cells.
Environ Health Perspect 1994 Nov;102 Suppl 7:65-72

Dietary boron, brain function, and cognitive performance.

Penland JG

United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Grand Forks, North Dakota 58202-9034.

Although the trace element boron has yet to be recognized as an essential nutrient for humans, recent data from animal and human studies suggest that boron may be important for mineral metabolism and membrane function. To investigate further the functional role of boron, brain electrophysiology and cognitive performance were assessed in response to dietary manipulation of boron (approximately 0.25 versus approximately 3.25 mg boron/2000 kcal/day) in three studies with healthy older men and women. Within-subject designs were used to assess functional responses in all studies. Spectral analysis of electroencephalographic data showed effects of dietary boron in two of the three studies. When the low boron intake was compared to the high intake, there was a significant (p < 0.05) increase in the proportion of low-frequency activity, and a decrease in the proportion of higher-frequency activity, an effect often observed in response to general malnutrition and heavy metal toxicity. Performance (e.g., response time) on various cognitive and psychomotor tasks also showed an effect of dietary boron. When contrasted with the high boron intake, low dietary boron resulted in significantly poorer performance (p < 0.05) on tasks emphasizing manual dexterity (studies II and III); eye-hand coordination (study II); attention (all studies); perception (study III); encoding and short-term memory (all studies); and long-term memory (study I). Collectively, the data from these three studies indicate that boron may play a role in human brain function and cognitive performance, and provide additional evidence that boron is an essential nutrient for humans.
The following study is a gold mine. The study shows that boron supplementation increases estradiol and testosterone and for reasons given above I believe that these  results suggest that boron might be deficient in hyperthyroidism. Additionally boron was shown to decrease plasma concentrations of calcium. High calcium levels may be associated with increased heart rate. Since calcium and magnesium act as antagonists, this reduction of calcium by boron may allow magnesium levels to rise and thereby lower the heart rate and muscle cramps.
Additionally boron was shown to increase plasma copper, copper-zinc superoxide dismutase (SOD is one of the body's most important free radical scavengers), and ceruloplasmin (a protein which transports copper). Here is direct evidence that boron is essential for copper metabolism and therefore quite probably for the correction of hyperthyroidism and possibly hypothyroidism.
Furthermore, the study offers a possible explanation for why estrogen may slow thyroid function: it increases plasma copper, SOD, and ceruloplasmin. Boron also increased these variables whether estrogen was administered or not. 
This is excellent documentation to support my observations that boron was important in my recovery from hyperT.
Environ Health Perspect 1994 Nov;102 Suppl 7:59-63

Biochemical and physiologic consequences of boron deprivation in humans.

Nielsen FH

United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Grand Forks, North Dakota 58202-9034.

Boron deprivation experiments with humans have yielded some persuasive findings for the hypothesis that boron is an essential nutrient. In the first nutritional study with humans involving boron, 12 postmenopausal women first were fed a diet that provided 0.25 mg boron/2000 kcal for 119 days, and then were fed the same diet with a boron supplement of 3 mg boron/day for 48 days. The boron supplementation reduced the total plasma concentration of calcium and the urinary excretions of calcium and magnesium, and elevated the serum concentrations of 17 beta-estradiol and testosterone. This study was followed by one in which five men over the age of 45, four postmenopausal women, and five postmenopausal women on estrogen therapy were fed a boron-low diet (0.23 mg/2000 kcal) for 63 days, then fed the same diet supplemented with 3 mg boron/day for 49 days. The diet was low in magnesium (115 mg/2000 kcal) and marginally adequate in copper (1.6 mg/2000 kcal) throughout the study. This experiment found higher erythrocyte superoxide dismutase, serum enzymatic ceruloplasmin, and plasma copper during boron repletion than boron depletion. The design of the most recent experiment was the same as the second study, except this time the diet was adequate in magnesium and copper. Estrogen therapy increased plasma copper and serum 17 beta-estradiol concentrations; the increases were depressed by boron deprivation. Estrogen ingestion also increased serum immunoreactive ceruloplasmin and erythrocyte superoxide dismutase; these variables also were higher during boron repletion than depletion for all subjects, not just those ingesting estrogen.
The following study indicates that boron and molybdenum affect estrogen metabolism and concludes that "It is possible that high dietary intakes of boron or molybdenum could regulate the rate of catabolism, or even the metabolic fate of the major estrogens."
J Inorg Biochem 1992 May 15;46(3):153-60 t

Borate and molybdate inhibition of catechol estrogen and pyrocatechol methylation by catechol-O-methyltransferase.

Beattie JH, Weersink E

Division of Biochemical Sciences, Rowett Research Institute, Bucksburn, Aberdeen, U.K.

The possibility that boron and molybdenum anions can influence sex steroid metabolism by forming complexes with catechol estrogens has been studied in vitro. The formation of 2-methoxyestrone (2-OHE1 2-Me) from 2-hydroxyestrone (2-OHE1) by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) was followed by measuring the transfer of the radiolabeled methyl group from S-adenosylmethionine. In the presence of both sodium tetraborate and sodium molybdate using a phosphate buffer medium, the formation of 2-OHE1 2-Me decreased as the anion:2-OHE1 molar ratio was increased. However, the reverse effect was observed when using a tris buffer medium and further investigation showed that phosphate and sulphate also enhanced COMT activity in a tris buffer medium. Boric acid affinity medium, used as a substitute for borate salt, also showed a negative relationship with enzyme activity in a phosphate buffer medium, and inhibition of methylation was more marked than with the free anion. Erythrocytes contain appreciable amounts of COMT, which is mostly responsible for the rapid O-methylation of catechol estrogens in blood. The methylation of a simple catechol compound, 1,2-dihydroxybenzene (pyrocatechol) was therefore studied using rat red blood cell lysates. Methylation was inhibited in a concentration-related manner by borate, as found in the studies of 2-OHE1. It is possible that high dietary intakes of boron or molybdenum could regulate the rate of catabolism, or even the metabolic fate of the major estrogens.
This is the original USDA study which showed that boron supplementation increases estrogen and testosterone in postmenopausal women. The study also showed that boron "markedly reduced the urinary excretion of calcium and magnesium," interacts with magnesium metabolism, and the boron effects were not negated by a high intake of aluminum (1000 mg per day). It seems as though boron conserves magnesium and calcium, prevents the bone demineralization, and protects against osteoporosis.
FASEB J 1987 Nov;1(5):394-7 t

Effect of dietary boron on mineral, estrogen, and testosterone metabolism in postmenopausal women.

Nielsen FH, Hunt CD, Mullen LM, Hunt JR

United States Department of Agriculture, Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, North Dakota 58202.

A study was done to examine the effects of aluminum, magnesium, and boron on major mineral metabolism in postmenopausal women. This communication describes some of the effects of dietary boron on 12 women between the ages of 48 and 82 housed in a metabolic unit. A boron supplement of 3 mg/day markedly affected several indices of mineral metabolism of seven women consuming a low-magnesium diet and five women consuming a diet adequate in magnesium; the women had consumed a conventional diet supplying about 0.25 mg boron/day for 119 days. Boron supplementation markedly reduced the urinary excretion of calcium and magnesium; the depression seemed more marked when dietary magnesium was low. Boron supplementation depressed the urinary excretion of phosphorus by the low-magnesium, but not by the adequate-magnesium, women. Boron supplementation markedly elevated the serum concentrations of 17 beta-estradiol and testosterone; the elevation seemed more marked when dietary magnesium was low. Neither high dietary aluminum (1000 mg/day) nor an interaction between boron and aluminum affected the variables presented. The findings suggest that supplementation of a low-boron diet with an amount of boron commonly found in diets high in fruits and vegetables induces changes in postmenopausal women consistent with the prevention of calcium loss and bone demineralization.

Additional studies on boron:

Boron is an essential nutrient for certain organisms, notably vascular plants and diatoms. Cyanobacteria require boron for formation of nitrogen-fixing heterocysts and boron may be beneficial to animals. Boron deficiency in plants produces manifold symptoms: many functions have been postulated. Deficiency symptoms first appear at growing points, within hours in root tips and within minutes or seconds in pollen tube tips, and are characterized by cell wall abnormalities. Boron-deficient tissues are brittle or fragile, while plants grown on high boron levels may have unusually flexible or resilient tissues. Borate forms cyclic diesters with appropriate diols or polyols. The most stable are formed with cis-diols on a furanoid ring. Two compounds have this structure physiologically: ribose in ribonucleotides and RNA, and apiose in the plant cell wall. Germanium can substitute for boron in carrot cell cultures. Both boron and germanium are localized primarily in the cell wall. We postulate that borate-apiofuranose ester cross-links are the auxin-sensitive acid-growth link in vascular plants, that the cyanobacterial heterocyst envelope depends on borate cross-linking of mannopyranose and/or galactopyranose residues in a polysaccharide-lipid environment, and that boron in diatoms forms ester cross-links in the polysaccharide cell wall matrix rather than boron-silicon interactions. Complexing of ribonucleotides is probably a factor in boron toxicity.boron--chemistry and biology.doc

Interest in boron as a naturally occurring trace element nutrient from the food supply is increasing. Mounting evidence suggests that boron is essential to human beings. This study explores the major food and beverage contributors of boron and estimates of daily boron intake from the American diet. Previous estimates in the literature of dietary boron consumption are based on limited foods and population segments. In this study we provide a more comprehensive assessment of boron consumption by the US population. A boron nutrient database of 1,944 individual foods was developed. These foods represent 95.3% by weight of all foods consumed in the US Department of Agriculture 1989-1991 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals (1989-1991 CSFII). The Boron Nutrient Database (version 1.0) was then linked to the 3-day food records of 11,009 respondents to the 1989-1991 CSFII to generate the average daily boron intake for each person. The weighted 5th percentile, median, mean, and 95th percentile boron intakes, respectively, are 0.43, 1.02, 1.17 and 2.42 mg/day for men; 0.33, 0.83, 0.96 and 1.94 mg/day for women; and 0.40, 0.86, 1.01 and 2.18 mg/day for pregnant women. For vegetarian adults, these intakes are 0.46, 1.30, 1.47 and 2.74 mg/day for men and 0.33, 1.00, 1.29 and 4.18 mg/day for women. The top 2 boron contributors, coffee and milk, are low in boron, yet they make up 12% of the total boron intake by virtue of the volume consumed. Among the top 50 boron contributors, peanut butter, wine, raisins, peanuts, and other nuts are high in boron. As more data become available on daily boron requirements, the results of this study may be used to assess whether Americans' daily intake of boron is adequate.boron--daily intake in American diet.doc

Biol Trace Elem Res 1998 Winter;66(1-3):319-30

The justification for providing dietary guidance for the nutritional intake of boron.

Nielsen FH

United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, ND 58202-9034, USA.

Because a biochemical function has not been defined for boron (B), its nutritional essentiality has not been firmly established. Nonetheless, dietary guidance should be formulated for B, because it has demonstrated beneficial, if not essential, effects in both animals and humans. Intakes of B commonly found with diets abundant in fruits, vegetables, legumes, pulses, and nuts have effects construed to be beneficial in macromineral, energy, nitrogen, and reactive oxygen metabolism, in addition to enhancing the response to estrogen therapy and improving psychomotor skills and cognitive processes of attention and memory. Perhaps the best-documented beneficial effect of B is on calcium (Ca) metabolism or utilization, and thus, bone calcification and maintenance. The paradigm emerging for the provision of dietary guidance that includes consideration of the total health effects of a nutrient, not just the prevention of a deficiency disease, has resulted in dietary guidance for chromium (Cr) and fluoride; both of these elements have beneficial effects in humans, but neither has a defined biochemical function. Knowledge of B nutritional effects in humans equals or is superior to that of Cr and fluoride; thus, establishing a dietary reference intake for B is justified. An analysis of both human and animal data suggests that an acceptable safe range of population mean intakes of B for adults could well be 1-13 mg/d. Recent findings indicate that a significant number of people do not consistently consume more than 1 mg B/d; this suggests that B could be a practical nutritional or clinical concern.
Biol Trace Elem Res 1988 Sep-Dec;17:91-107

Magnesium and methionine deprivation affect the response of rats to boron deprivation.

Nielsen FH, Shuler TR, Zimmerman TJ, Uthus EO

US Department of Agriculture, Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, ND 58202.

A series of nine experiments were done to obtain further evidence that boron might be involved in major mineral metabolism (Ca, P, and Mg), thus indicating that boron is an essential nutrient for animals. Eight factorially arranged experiments of 6-10 wk durations were done with weanling Sprague-Dawley male rats. One factorially arranged experiment was done with weanling spontaneously hypertensive rats. The variables in each experiment were dietary boron supplements of 0 and 3 micrograms g, and dietary magnesium supplements of either 200 (Experiments 1-3) or 100 (Experiments 4-9) and 400 micrograms/g. In Experiments 7 and 9, a third variable was dietary manganese supplements of 25 and 50 micrograms/g. Methionine status was varied throughout the series of experiments by supplementing the casein-based diet with methionine and arginine. Findings were obtained indicating that the severity of magnesium deprivation and the methionine status of the rat strongly influence the extent and nature of the interaction between magnesium and boron, and the response to boron deprivation. When magnesium deprivation was severe enough to cause typical signs of deficiency, a significant interaction between boron and magnesium was found. Generally, the interaction was characterized by the deprivation of one of the elements making the deficiency signs of the other more marked. The interaction was most evident when the diet was not supplemented with methionine and especially when the diet contained luxuriant arginine. Signs of boron deprivation were also more marked and consistent when the diet contained marginal methionine and luxuriant arginine. Among the signs of boron deprivation exhibited by rats fed marginal methionine were depressed growth and bone magnesium concentration, and elevated spleen wt/body wt and kidney wt/body wt ratios. Because the boron supplement of 3 micrograms/g did not make the dietary intake of this element unusual, it seems likely that the response of the rats to dietary boron in the present study were manifestations of physiological, not pharmacological, actions, and support the hypothesis that boron is an essential nutrient for the rat.