A simple animal model of hyperammonemia

Hepatology : Official Journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases
I AzorínS Grisolía


Rats were fed a standard diet or the standard diet supplemented with ammonium acetate (20% w/w) for up to 100 days. The effect of the ingestion of the high-ammonium diet on some aspects of nitrogen metabolism in rats was studied. Ammonia levels in blood increased approximately 3-fold; in brain, liver and muscle the increases were 36, 34 and 50%, respectively. Urea levels in blood and urea excretion increased approximately 2-fold. There was no increase of carbamyl phosphate synthase. Liver glutamine synthase activity increased by 58% and glutamate dehydrogenase by 40%, whereas glutaminase was not affected. Glutamine content in brain was twice that of controls. This new animal model to study hyperammonemia offers several advantages over others: it is simpler, is bloodless, requires no animal manipulation and permits long-term studies.


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