Vitamin deficits in severe alcoholic fatty liver of man calculated from multiple reference units

Oscar Frank, Anita Luisada-Opper, Michael F. Sorrell, Allan D. Thomson, Herman Baker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Liver tissue levels of thiamine, pantothenate, biotin, vitamin B12, total folates, nicotinate, and vitamin B6 were determined in biopsy and autopsy specimens from 69 patients with normal liver and 44 patients with severe fatty liver. These results define normal liver tissue B-complex vitamin levels in man and demonstrate a significant reduction of all the vitamins when the liver is severely infiltrated with fat. When vitamin levels in liver were related to dry weight, total fats, total nitrogen, and DNA-phosphorus as reference bases, vitamin titers in order of decreasing magnitude in normal livers were nicotinate, pantothenate, B6, thiamine, N5-methyltetrahydrofolates, other tetrahydrofolates, B12, and biotin. In the severe fatty liver pantothenate was higher than nicotinate and other tetrahydrofolates were higher than N5-methyltetrahydrofolates. Biotin was markedly decreased in the severe fatty liver when dry weight, total fat, total nitrogen, and DNA-phosphorus were each used as reference base; however, the thiamine and N5-methyltetrahydrofolate pattern varied if dry weight alone was used as reference base. Total liver fat compared favorably with total nitrogen and DNA-phosphorus as a reference base. It showed close agreement with, on one hand, tissue vitamin decreases and on the other hand, with histologically demonstrable fat.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)191-197
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental and Molecular Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 1971
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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