Effects of vitamin A deficiency on rat liver alcohol dehydrogenase expression and alcohol elimination rate in rats

Jane Pinaire, Jennifer R. Smith, Won Kyoo Cho, David W. Crabb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


Background: Vitamin A has been suggested to regulate the expression of liver alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) in humans. There are few studies on the ability of retinoic acid to affect ADH expression in vivo and none on its effects on alcohol metabolic rate. Methods: Male Sprague Dawley® rats were used for isolation of hepatocytes or were rendered vitamin A deficient by feeding a deficient diet for 7 weeks. ADH, retinoic acid receptor β, and retinoid X receptor a protein levels were analyzed by Western blotting. Alcohol elimination rate was determined by following blood alcohol levels after administering a 1.5 g/kg dose of ethanol intraperitoneally. Results: Retinoic acid had no effect on ADH protein in cultured hepatocytes. In the vitamin A deficient rats, retinol was not detectable in serum or liver at the time animals were killed. ADH and retinoid X receptor α protein levels were unchanged in the deficient group compared with a vitamin A sufficient control group, whereas retinoic acid receptor β levels increased 40%. The deficient rats had a reduced volume of distribution of alcohol, but this largely was accounted for by their smaller body size. The alcohol elimination rates were lower in the deficient animals, but this was accounted for by reduced body and liver weights. Conclusions: Severe vitamin A deficiency did not alter liver ADH protein expression or rates of alcohol elimination when expressed per gram of body or liver weight.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1759-1764
Number of pages6
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000


  • Alcohol Dehydrogenase
  • Alcohol Elimination Rate
  • Rat Liver
  • Vitamin A

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology

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