Tyrosine hydroxylase and the conversion of L-thyroxine into 3',3,5-triiodo-L-thyronone in the rat

A PascualG M de Escobar


We have studied the effects of alpha-methyl-p-tyrosine (alpha-MPT), an inhibitor of tyrosine hydroxylase, on the in vivo conversion of L-T4 (T4) to 3',3,5-triiodo-L-thyronine (T3), and on the biological effectiveness of T4. Thyroidectomized rats were used and were injected daily with T4 maintenance doses. Three different types of experiments were carred out. The first involved isotopic equilibration with 125I-labeled T4 and measurement of urinary 125I excretion. The second series involved the injection of a single dose of [125I]T4, with the amounts of [125I]T3 in different tissues being studied 7 or 20 h later. The third series involved daily treatment for 13 days with T4 and alpha-MPT, at the end of ehich the liver alpha-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase activity was measured as a parameter of the biological effects of the hormone. Though the experimental approaches used clearly disclosed the well known effects of 6-propyl-2-thiouracil, no clear-cut effects of alpha-MPT were observed. It is concluded that alpha-MPT neither inhibits the conversion of T4 to T3 in vivo in rats nor affects the biological potency of a given dose of T4, at least to an extent compararble to that observed when 6-propyl-2-thiouracil is used. Thus, present...Continue Reading


Feb 1, 1987·Journal of Endocrinological Investigation·A Pascual

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