Biotin & Thyroid Lab Tests: Is it Dangerous to use this vitamin?

Biotin & Thyroid Lab Tests: Is it Dangerous to use this vitamin?

Is it true that taking the over-the-counter supplement biotin can interfere with your thyroid lab tests? 

The answer is yes. 

But there’s a lot more to it than that. 

In this article, we are going to explore whether taking biotin is safe if you have thyroid problems, how it impacts your thyroid lab tests, what to do if you are taking biotin and your next steps. 

TLDR version:

Biotin negatively impacts thyroid lab tests and may cause falsely elevated numbers. Biotin does NOT, however, directly alter your thyroid function so even though your numbers may be high your symptoms will not match your lab tests. 


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Biotin Does Interfere with Thyroid Lab Tests

There have been numerous studies and case reports (1) lately that confirm that the over-the-counter supplement biotin can negatively interfere with your thyroid lab tests. 

But what does this mean and is it even important?

It is definitely important and it definitely matters but, like everything, it requires some more explanation. 

Biotin interferes with thyroid lab tests in the following ways:

  • It causes falsely HIGH free T3 and free T4 lab tests
  • It causes falsely LOW TSH levels. 

The image above contains thyroid lab tests from a patient both on and off biotin. 

You can see that this patient’s TSH is as high as 2.0 uIU/ml off of biotin and as low as 0.08 uIU/ml when taking biotin. 

You can also see the changes to both free T3 and free T4 levels which are all falsely elevated at the same time (I talk more about why this is an issue below). 

But it’s very important to understand the difference between interference of your thyroid lab tests and actual changes in your thyroid function. 

Biotin interferes with the lab test but has no negative impact on thyroid function itself. 

This is important so I want to repeat it. 


Biotin supplements can interfere with your thyroid lab test results and make you look more hyperthyroid. Here’s how to solve this issue: #thyroid #hypothyroidism #hashimoto #biotin #thyroidlabs

♬ original sound – Dr. Westin Childs

Biotin does NOT negatively alter your thyroid levels directly. It only makes the tests inaccurate and it makes it appear that there are changes to your thyroid levels. 

I’ve noticed that some thyroid patients have suggested that other thyroid patients do not take biotin for this reason and I do not believe that this is the right way of looking at it. 

I suspect that these people falsely believe that biotin is causing changes to their thyroid levels and not to the tests themselves. 

They probably don’t understand that you can change your thyroid lab TESTS without actually changing the thyroid levels in your body. 

Biotin does this exact thing by interfering with the testing assay that doctors use to test thyroid blood levels. 

The problem is that many testing assays contain biotin-streptavidin (2) to capture thyroid hormones in your blood. 

This combination also attracts biotin which may be floating around in your bloodstream, much like thyroid hormone, and stick to the assay causing a problem. 

If biotin attaches to the biotin-streptavidin complex then it will look like your levels are higher than they really are. 

The good news is that even though this is a known problem the solution is actually quite easy to follow. 

All you need to do, as a patient, is simply avoid taking biotin for 2-3 days BEFORE your thyroid lab tests. 

This will allow the biotin levels in your bloodstream to metabolize down to levels that do not interfere with the tests.

Easy enough?

I hope so, and this is what I recommend for ALL thyroid patients who take biotin. 

The only problem is that many of you probably don’t even realize you are taking biotin and, even if you do know you are taking it, you may not realize that it affects your thyroid lab tests! 

Thus the importance of this article. 

How it can be dangerous

For the most part, I think that the attention that biotin receives and how it impacts your thyroid lab tests is largely overblown. 

But that doesn’t mean that there are some potential dangers associated with biotin use. 

Perhaps the most concerning potential thing that could happen would be a misdiagnosis or a mischaracterization of thyroid status in the body upon tests that are influenced heavily by biotin interference. 

This could theoretically become an issue that may cause both stress and anxiety for some patients. 

How would this happen?

Well, remember that biotin interferes with the testing assay (it does NOT interfere with thyroid function). 

The interference tends to cause abnormally high readings of thyroid lab tests, especially high levels of both free T4 and free T3

It would be plausible then, that doctors who are not very knowledgeable about biotin and how it influences your lab tests may make adjustments based off of these false readings (3). 

For hypothyroid patients this is concerning because this population is often already undertreated, to begin with!

The last thing you would want to do is give your doctor another reason to reduce your dose of thyroid medication which is probably not high enough, to begin with. 

If your doctor reduces your dose based on the false premise that your thyroid lab tests are elevated then you will most likely experience WORSENING symptoms of hypothyroidism. 

That means things like more hair loss (which is probably the reason you started taking biotin), more fatigue, more weight gain, and so on. 

As a thyroid patient, you should be very sensitive to the fact that biotin alters your thyroid lab tests because you may have to advocate for yourself in your doctor’s visits. 

For patients who don’t have hypothyroidism, this could also be a big deal because it may cause doctors to falsely believe that you have hyperthyroidism. 

If you are someone who has abnormally elevated high free T3 and high free T4 with a normal or semi-low TSH, you are primed to be labeled as hyperthyroid. 

The last thing you would want to have happened to you as a patient is to artificially suppress thyroid function unless it is absolutely necessary. 

I suspect that there are many individuals out there, perhaps even those who are reading this, which fall into this category. 

These patients may spend the next several months to years worrying about their thyroid unnecessarily, simply because their doctor doesn’t understand how biotin impacts thyroid lab tests. 

Why it probably isn’t that big of a deal

As a thyroid patient, as long as you are aware of how biotin interferes with your lab tests then taking it really shouldn’t be an issue. 

Especially when you consider that all you need to do is simply avoid taking biotin for 2-3 days prior to your lab tests (4) to ensure that it is NOT interfering. 

I think it’s important to understand this because there are a lot of potential benefits that can come from using biotin, especially for a thyroid patient. 

The amount of biotin that you are taking also plays an important role in whether or not you should avoid taking it prior to your lab tests. 

Most multivitamins contain biotin but in much smaller doses than those found in typical hair, skin, and nail supplements. 

For instance, biotin found in my thyroid multivitamin is dosed at 500mcg per serving. 

Whereas my recommended thyroid hair, skin, and nails supplement contain 5,000mcg of biotin which represents a much higher percentage of the RDA (5) compared to the 500mcg dose. 

You will probably find this trend to be true in other formulations of both multivitamins and specific hair, skin, and nail supplements. 

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Multivitamins contain smaller amounts of biotin whereas specific hair, skin, and nail supplements contain much more. 

This is important to you as a thyroid patient because you may be unknowingly taking biotin. 

The good news is that low doses, the 100-300mcg range, probably do not impact your thyroid lab tests that severely. 

But, there have been no studies to suggest what a “safe” dose of biotin is which does not impact your thyroid lab tests so my recommendation is to stop ALL forms of biotin 2-3 days prior to your lab draw. 

It’s better to be safe than sorry, especially with the other difficulties that thyroid patients face. 

Hair loss, Biotin, and Thyroid Patients

Can you, or should you, take biotin as a thyroid patient?

We’ve been discussing how biotin can impact your lab tests but we haven’t really discussed why thyroid patients are likely to be taking this nutrient. 

The reason is simple:

Biotin plays an important role in the hair growth cycle and MANY thyroid patients suffer from hair loss, even when taking thyroid medication

And, as it turns out, this is probably, at least partially, related to the micronutrient status in their body. 

Biotin, an important vitamin, is one of many important vitamins and co-factors which are required for normal hair growth. 

If you are deficient in any of these nutrients then you may experience hair loss, hair fall, or hair that is slow to grow. 

All of these are big issues for thyroid patients who also tend to suffer from under-treatment of their own thyroid medication which is itself another risk factor for hair loss. 

Hypothyroidism also predisposes people to develop micronutrient deficiencies because of the important role that it plays in their stomach. 

Low thyroid levels can impact micronutrient absorption and increase your risk of developing gut-related issues such as IBS or SIBO

In addition, patients with Hashimoto’s (an autoimmune disease of the thyroid gland) also have a higher risk of developing Celiac disease (6) which can also limit the absorption of macromolecules and micronutrients. 

All of these factors can potentially impact your hair growth. 

It’s no wonder why, then, many thyroid patients look to biotin for help. 

But does it work?

The answer is that it has the potential to work (7) but that doesn’t guarantee that it will work. 

Many thyroid patients do find benefit, though, which is why I often recommend it (in addition to other therapies) to help with hair loss. 

My personal recommendation is to combine biotin with other important co-factors such as selenium, zinc, choline, and B12 (8). 

By combining these therapies together you will have the best chance of improving your hair quality. 

If you do decide to take biotin, ensure that you take a good supplement, such as this one, and ensure that you avoid taking it 2-3 days prior to any blood draws related to your thyroid. 

What should you do? 

As a thyroid patient, you should be acutely aware of the fact that biotin impacts your thyroid lab tests. 

This is true even if you aren’t knowingly taking biotin. 


Because only about 30% of people taking biotin realize that they are taking it (9). 

Think about it. 

How many supplements are you taking right now? Are you aware of the ingredients in every single one of those supplements? 

Some supplements, such as the ones that I offer, contain upwards of 15 ingredients. 

While the ingredients are not always at their maximum dose, they can still cause minor interference with testing assays and may impact your lab tests. 

My recommendation to you, as a patient, is to be aware of everything that you are putting in your body. 

Pay attention to your supplements and look for any extra biotin. 

You should also have a knowledge of how biotin impacts your lab tests so that you can inform your doctor. 

If a thyroid lab test comes back abnormal, and if you are taking any supplement, don’t automatically assume that the problem is your thyroid. 

Think first about other factors such as the supplements you are taking, whether or not they contain biotin, and simply re-test in a few weeks. 

This retesting phase may prevent a lot of unnecessary stress and changes to your thyroid medication (which is not ideal unless absolutely necessary). 


There is no question whether or not biotin can artificially interfere with normal thyroid lab tests. 

The degree that it interferes with these lab tests and whether or not you should take it, however, are both important questions. 

My opinion is that it is both possible to take biotin and avoid any potential issues by being thoughtful about when you take it and when you get your blood drawn. 

As a thyroid patient, I don’t think you should be scared of this nutrient but instead should have a healthy understanding of how it works and how it impacts your lab tests. 

But now I want to hear from you:

Are you currently taking biotin?

Has it ever interfered with your thyroid lab tests?

Do you suspect that this has happened without you knowing or realizing it?

Is biotin working to help improve your hair loss?

Leave your questions or comments below! 










is taking biotin dangerous for your thyroid?

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About Dr. Westin Childs

Hey! I'm Westin Childs D.O. (former Osteopathic Physician). I don't practice medicine anymore and instead specialize in helping people like YOU who have thyroid problems, hormone imbalances, and weight loss resistance. I love to write and share what I've learned over the years. I also happen to formulate the best supplements on the market (well, at least in my opinion!) and I'm proud to say that over 80,000+ people have used them over the last 7 years. You can read more about my own personal health journey and why I am so passionate about what I do.

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51 thoughts on “Biotin & Thyroid Lab Tests: Is it Dangerous to use this vitamin?”

  1. Yes, I believe my 10,000 IUs of biotin every day is interfering in my blood work. My TSH was 0.03 in my blood test from last week. Unfortunately, I just saw this article today. I will send this article to my doctor.

    • Hi B,

      It sounds like that may be an issue! Be sure to follow the recommendations in the article and avoid taking your biotin 3-5 days before your next blood test and you should be good to go.

    • Last night I came home from a 2 day hospital stay. I keep passing out. I found out that I have 3 leaky valves.
      My aortic artery is moderate to severely blocked. My thyroid was 7.1
      slightly high is what the Dr said. I just read your article I DO take Biotin!
      I need to do a retest now.
      I’m slightly over weight. 5’6″ -181 lbs
      always tired, lossing my hair bad,
      So….what do you think?

      • Hi Robin,

        It’s unlikely that your biotin intake impacted your leaky heart valves but it certainly may have an impact on your thyroid lab tests.

    • I had my thyroid lab work done several times & they found small tumors on my thyroid. I was taking a complex B vitamin & it had 10,000 MG of BIOTIN but before the last test (i had lost so much hair & my skin was horrid & my brain fog is terrible thats why i picked a higher Biotin level) , I ran out of my B Vitamins before the Thyroid lab work. My TSH was 19, and my T3 & T4 were abnormal. Finally, my HYPOTHYROIDISM was showing up! My ENT sent me to an Endocrinologist who could not believe my Hypothyroidism had not shown up before. Then he asked me if I had been taking BIOTIN. I said yes of course. He had just read about the tests being altered by the BIOTIN. My Onocologist (been breast cancer free for 4 years but the radiation i believe “fried” my thyroid ) did not know about this yet, I told my PCP too.

      • Hi Yvonne,

        Unfortunately, that’s not very surprising as doctors know very little about the impact that supplements have on the body because they don’t spend much time researching them. As a general rule of thumb, you’ll get far more valuable and helpful information about supplements and their impact from alternative doctors as opposed to conventional doctors. Your mileage may vary, of course, depending on the training of the doctor.

  2. I’ve been taking 10,000 IU Biotin for the last few years. This was in conjunction with having a full thyroid panel run at least twice a year, and not knowing about the lab interference issue until recently. In the next week or so I’ll be having all thyroid and related (vit D, B12, iron, etc.) levels tested for the first time without any Biotin in my system.. I’ll be very interested to see those results.
    Could you also please clarify for me “taking Biotin with co-factors …”. Does this mean at the same time, or just make sure they’re included in daily regimen? I do already take them but at a different time of day. So I’m wondering if that needs to change.

    Thank you!

    • Hi Melissa,

      It depends on what you are taking. Things like iron should not be taken with other supplements or thyroid medications while it doesn’t necessarily matter as much for others.

  3. I read this post early last week and checked my multivitamin for its biotin level. I had recently started a new multi because my previous multi had become unavailable. To my surprise the new multi had nearly 4 times as much biotin as my previous one!

    I messaged my doctor, told her about the article, included your bibliography, and asked to be retested (I had been feeling tired and achy and suspected that I was hypothyroid again, although my most recent tests were within normal range). I stopped taking the multi for 3 days, then went to the lab. Sure enough, my TSH result went from around .9 to 13 (T4 level also consistent with being hypothyroid). We’re upping my levothyroxine dose (after 30 years of experimentation I’ve learned that levothyroxine works best for me).

    Thank you, Dr. Childs, for solving this mystery for me!

      • A couple of questions:

        Is the impact of biotin on lab results dose dependent (the more biotin you take, the larger the difference between actual TSH, T4, T3 values and reported values)?

        • Also, I’d like to increase my dose more rapidly than one increment every 6 weeks because I was already hypothyroid at the dose I was at before my doctor lowered it one step in June. Is increasing more than one dose level in 6 weeks safe for a 65 year old?

  4. RDI for biotin is 30 ug/d. Half life is about 2 hours, definitely less than 3 hrs. Using a 3 hour half life a 5mg dose (5000 ug) will be down to 40 ug in 24 hours. Taken 1x/d the next 5mg dose will peak at 5020 ug 27 hours after the first dose, so there is almost no build up. Using a 2 hour half life makes little difference at 24 (or 27) hours. It may be that the half life gets longer as the dose remainder approaches base line, but it is clear that 3 days for even a 10 mg dose is overkill (ie very very safe). My B multivitamin has a 500 ug dose of biotin – no need to go off it at all. In fact, no real need for any dose less than 5 mg.

    • Hi Murray,

      Pharmacodynamics are never as clean clinically as they appear to be in vitro or in the lab. You are welcome to do whatever length of time you feel is right but there will always be exceptions due to genetics, metabolism issues, absorption, diffusion into cells, and more.

      • My doctor lowered my Synthroid on my last visit and my tinnitus has returned after five days on the lower dosage. I do take a multi-vitamin that includes biotin and will stop it one week prior to my next bloodwork. The tinnitus had ceased after many years of experiencing it once the thyroid medicine was prescribed at the proper strength. Have you heard of this before in any of your patients?

        • Hi Kathy,

          I have not personally seen it but I have heard about it before. There are also some studies that show there is some connection between tinnitus and hypothyroidism.

  5. Hi Dr. Childs,
    Thank you for all you do to help all of us suffering with widely misunderstood conditions. The only biotin I’m ingesting is that which I’m obtaining from several of your supplements (Functional Fuel, Regrowth Complex, Berberine and Power-B). Should I stop taking these 5 days prior to my labs or is the combined Biotin content in these supplements low enough to not sway my lab results?
    Thank you and have a blessed day.

  6. I was taking biotin and my new doctor wanted me to go off of it and get re-tested in 6 months. I don’t feel nearly as well and I have started to gain weight. I read in your article to just go off it 2-3 days before testing so I will do that. I think biotin brings a lot to the table for me as I follow your regime of b12, zinc, etc. I felt much better and my numbers seemed good. I have bloodwork 5/13/2020 and will be interested in seeing what we get. I enjoyed your article.

  7. Hi Dr.

    I’m struggling and hope you can help. I had a thyroidectomy in ’08 because I had Hashimoto’s and Grave’s. Felt ok for a few years. But the anxiety, insomnia, and body aches have never gone away completely. In 2013, I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. I have been cancer free ever since. Now, as a 48 year old woman, I believe I’m starting to go through perimenopause. The hot flashes are insane and I’m losing a lot of hair. Do you have any suggestions? I obviously can’t take any sort of hormones, nor do I want to. Any advice would be wonderful.

    Thank you,

  8. I enjoy reading your articles on the Thyroid. You have an easy way to understanding everything. I am 11 years in. Cancer Free! I am now struggling with my Doctor and the dosages. After reading your article today I am confident that I have enough knowledge to fight for what is right for my body. I am barely on the range of having any T3 Actually I am a point behind the scale. But because My TSH always read on the hyper side they don’t change my meds. It is frustrating to say the least. I am just starting to see a weight gain and I need to stop it before it spirals out of control. If you are training other Doctors could you please list them so your readers can see them. Thank you


  9. I began taking a hair supplement containing biotin at the suggestion of my dermatologist. I had thyroid cancer 13 years ago. The last three months my levels have been off and my doctor lowered my Synthroid from 88 to 75. I had been on 88 for a long time. My hair is falling out and I was not feeling wellAfter taking the biotin for only three days he ordered another blood test and my TSH went from .08 to 8,9. Now he wants to do another test in two weeks and told me to stop taking the vitamin. From what I read the biotin could cause TSH to be lower not higher. Is that correct?

  10. I just want to say thank you for this article. It’s great information!! I do suffer from hypothyroidism and am an avid user of Biotin. It helps considerably with my hair. I also recently had blood work done and the results showed TSH level at .4. Of course, my doctor freaked out and lowered my prescription. After reading this article, I will request a new test, while remembering to stop taking the biotin 3-5 days prior to testing.

  11. Back in June of 2020, my thyroid TSH was .01, and the T4-FREE was 2.32 with a note “Potential of falsely elevated results when biotin concentrations are >10 ng/mL”. I was sent to a thyroid doctor who put me on Methimazole 10MG for hyperthyroidism July 8. By Sept. my eyes were swelling and he told me to stop taking it till my next appointment, which was Oct. 13. I hadn’t realized how jittery I was before taking the medicine, and how much better I felt taking it, but before the next appointment one of my eyes bloodied out one and a half times, and I was back to the jittery feeling and anxious to get back on that pill. Now that I noticed the note that said biotin level could cause elevated level…..and seeing my horrible fingernails that are so ridged, I decided I really needed to take some of that “hair, nails, and skin” supplement. My vitamins have 500 mcg in them. The doctor did tell me to stop taking that supplement a few days before my next lab, which is what you are saying and helps me understand why.
    I just wonder what you think of all this.

  12. Glad to hear that I can stop my hair,skin,nails supplement a few days before my tests! My doctor did not tell me that when he suggested I stop taking biotin. Good article.

    I was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, graves, but in 6 months my numbers are normal. My doctor wants me to continue the meds for 3 more months. I’m not convinced of that idea, when numbers are normal why continue to take meds when they’re apparently not needed?

    Also, I notice the majority of your info on thyroid disease centers on hypothyroid/hashimoto’s. Is that because it’s more common than hyperthyroid/graves?

    • Hi Dori,

      Hypothyroidism is more common but also most people with hyperthyroidism end up with hypothyroidism so the information directed at hypothyroid patients applies to both conditions.

  13. Ahhh… this may explain why, after having been on a full dose of 200mg for most of my adult life, my doctor has, twice now, asked me to reduce my thyroxine dose (only to then put it straight back up again the first time around). I think perhaps it’s worth asking about another round of bloods in which I stop taking my B complex for a few days before hand. Thanks for this!

  14. Can taking Biotin skew labs for Ferritin levels resulting in higher than normal level of Ferritin in lab results? I understand Ferritin is stored iron which is not good in high levels.

  15. My endocrinologist put me on biotin at my first visit with him nine years ago. He also advised to stop all supplements a couple of days before blood work is done. I stop my supplements for a couple of days not only for measuring thyroid function, but for bi-annual bloodwork with my PCP. I can tell a big difference in my hair, nails and skin taking biotin, than when I was first diagnosed. My hair is thick and healthy and my nail are stronger, but not entirely free of chipping and breaking. My skin still needs lotion, especially in the winter. I take liquid drops.

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      Thanks for sharing! Biotin is great for hair, skin, and nails. It’s unfortunate that many thyroid patients are avoiding it based on bad advice from some doctors.

  16. Labs last week, TSH .01, T3 normal, T3 Free 4.70, T4 Free normal, TSI 191, ANA, w Reflex to Titer Positive. Diag w PBCholangitis 2017, CDE & fatigue top symptoms similar to Graves which is what my Dr is suggesting. I’ve asked for retest bc I’m drinking more milk due to recent diagnosis of Osteoporosis prob from PBC & I take vit B complex for PBC fatigue that contains 300 mcg daily & 1000 mcg if I run out & use another brand. Can biotin be a possible cause?

  17. I find you very informative and easy to understand. I like the way you make sure we definitely understand the part Biotin plays in lab results. I am not sure it is easy to get your supplements to the UK without incurring import duty etc.
    Vanessa UK

    • Hi Vanessa,

      Glad you find the info helpful! I’m fairly certain that all imports into the UK incur an import duty/VAT tax.

  18. Thank you for this article. I have been trying to find out whether the Biotin affects actual thyroid levels or just interferes with the test and you have explained it well. It has interfered with both my thyroid lab results and my parathyroid lab results but, fortunately, the lab where I go flagged these with the information that Biotin can interfere and I stopped taking it for 5 days. However, until now, I could not find information about the actual levels of the hormones.
    Susan Filene, M.D.

    • Hi Dr. Filene,

      Glad you found it helpful! The biotin is really only interfering with the assay which is a 100% solvable problem.

  19. Hi Dr Westin,
    I had hyperthyroid, but now have been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s. I used to take Biotin on a regular basis, but then discontinued. What is your recommended daily dosage? My eyelashes have been thinning, and my eyebrows are thinning (again, after some growth)

  20. I have been taking 10,000 mcg biotin for quite some time now. I had a TSH level of 0.02 recently. I told my doctor about this article and asked to repeat the TSH test once I stopped taking biotin for a few days. I stopped the biotin for 7 days, repeated the TSH test and was VERY surprised to see the results were actually a bit worse at 0.01! Not sure if I’m one of those people where biotin does not impact my TSH test results or perhaps the biotin is still in my system? My doctor will be lowering my Synthroid dosage. I’m going to stay off the biotin for now and repeat the TSH test in 3 months. I will be very interested to see if there’s any improvement.

    • Hi Susan,

      Based on all available information, biotin should be eliminated after about 2-5 days so it still shouldn’t be causing issues after 7 days of not using it. The lab test result may actually be real given your confirmation with a second test and still having it fairly close to the original.

  21. Can taking biotin also impact thyroid antibody test results? My antibody levels were 274 in late December and this month they jumped to 749. I was taking biotin though and my TSH was drastically lower, so I do think the biotin impacted my TSH but I can’t find any info on whether it can impact TPO antibody tests too.

    • Hi Mal,

      Based on my research, it seems to only impact thyroid function lab tests such as TSH, free T3, and free T4 but I think it could be possible depending on the type of assay used to measure thyroid antibodies.

  22. Biotin contains a sulfur atom so the question is: how does mercury, as from amalgam fillings, interact with that sulfur. Does mercury toxicity wreck biotin and deprive a person of its benefits. Leon Chaitow has said that biotin prevent conversion of Candida albicans to a nasty fungal forms of the organism, and so the question arises: could this be an indirect effect of the effect mercury has on biotin?


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