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Open Access Orally Ingested 13C2-Retinol is Incorporated into Hepatic Retinyl Esters in a Nonhuman Primate (Macaca mulatta) Model of Hypervitaminosis A

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The mechanism responsible for the metabolism of vitamin A during hypervitaminosis is largely unknown. This study investigated hepatic 13C-retinol uptake in hypervitaminotic A rhesus monkeys. We hypothesized that individual retinyl esters would be enriched in 13C after a physiologic dose of 13C2-retinyl acetate, thus suggesting de novo in vivo hepatic retinol esterification. Male rhesus macaques (n = 16; 11.8 ± 2.9 y) each received 3.5 mol 14, 15-13C2-retinyl acetate. Blood was drawn at baseline and 5 h and 2, 4, 7, 14, 21, and 28 d after administration. Liver biopsies were collected 7 d before and 2 d after dose administration (n = 4) and at 7, 14, and 28 d after dose administration (n = 4 per time point). 13C enrichments of retinol and retinyl esters HPLC-purified from liver samples were measured by using gas chromatography–combustion–isotope ratio mass spectrometry. 13C enrichment of total vitamin A and individual retinyl esters were significantly greater 2 d after dose administration compared with baseline levels. In contrast, the concentration of isolated retinyl esters did not always increase 2 d after treatment. Given that the liver biopsy site differed between monkeys, these data suggest that the accumulation of hepatic retinyl esters is a dynamic process that is better represented by combining analytical techniques. This sensitive methodology can be used to characterize vitamin A trafficking after physiologic doses of 13C-retinol. In this nonhuman primate model of hypervitaminosis A, hepatic retinyl esters continued to accumulate with high liver stores.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Interdepartmental Graduate Program in Nutritional Sciences, University of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA 2: Interdepartmental Graduate Program in Nutritional Sciences, University of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, Wisconsin. Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 01 February 2010

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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