Safety and toxicological evaluation of a synthetic vitamin K2, menaquinone-7

Toxicol Mech Methods. 2011 Sep;21(7):520-32. doi: 10.3109/15376516.2011.568983. Epub 2011 Jul 25.


Menaquinone-7 (MK-7) is part of a family of vitamin K that are essential co-factors for the enzyme γ-glutamyl carboxylase, which is involved in the activation of γ-carboxy glutamate (Gla) proteins in the body. Gla proteins are important for normal blood coagulation and normality of bones and arteries. The objective of this study was to examine the potential toxicity of synthetic MK-7 in BomTac:NMRI mice and in Sprague-Dawley rats. In an acute oral toxicity test, mice were administered a single oral dose of 2000 mg/kg body weight (limit dose) and no toxicity was observed during the 14-day observation period. In the subchronic oral toxicity test in rats, animals were administered MK-7 for 90 days by gavage at the following doses: 0 (vehicle control, corn oil), 2.5, 5, and 10 mg/kg body weight/day. All generated data, including clinical observations, ophthalmology, clinical pathology, gross necropsy, and histopathology, revealed no compound-related toxicity in rats. Any statistically significant findings in clinical pathology parameters and/or organ weights noted were considered to be within normal biological variability. Therefore, under the conditions of this experiment, the median lethal dose (LD(50)) of MK-7 after a single oral administration in mice was determined to be greater than the limit dose level of 2000 mg/kg body weight. The no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) of MK-7, when administered orally to rats for 90 days, was considered to be equal to 10 mg/kg body weight/day, the highest dose tested, based on lack of toxicity during the 90-day study period.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antifibrinolytic Agents / toxicity*
  • Biomarkers, Pharmacological / analysis
  • Biomarkers, Pharmacological / blood
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Eating / drug effects
  • Female
  • Lethal Dose 50
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • No-Observed-Adverse-Effect Level
  • Organ Size / drug effects
  • Organ Specificity
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Toxicity Tests, Acute
  • Toxicity Tests, Subchronic
  • Vitamin K 2 / analogs & derivatives*
  • Vitamin K 2 / toxicity


  • Antifibrinolytic Agents
  • Biomarkers, Pharmacological
  • Vitamin K 2
  • menaquinone 7