Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Nutr. 2005 Jul;135(7):1718-25.

Tissue distribution of quercetin in rats and pigs.

Author information

  • 1RIKILT-Institute of Food Safety, Wageningen University and Research Centre, Wageningen, The Netherlands.


Quercetin is a dietary polyphenolic compound with potentially beneficial effects on health. Claims that quercetin has biological effects are based mainly on in vitro studies with quercetin aglycone. However, quercetin is rapidly metabolized, and we have little knowledge of its availability to tissues. To assess the long-term tissue distribution of quercetin, 2 groups of rats were given a 0.1 or 1% quercetin diet [approximately 50 or 500 mg/kg body weight (wt)] for 11 wk. In addition, a 3-d study was done with pigs fed a diet containing 500 mg quercetin/kg body wt. Tissue concentrations of quercetin and quercetin metabolites were analyzed with an optimized extraction method. Quercetin and quercetin metabolites were widely distributed in rat tissues, with the highest concentrations in lungs (3.98 and 15.3 nmol/g tissue for the 0.1 and 1% quercetin diet, respectively) and the lowest in brain, white fat, and spleen. In the short-term pig study, liver (5.87 nmol/g tissue) and kidney (2.51 nmol/g tissue) contained high concentrations of quercetin and quercetin metabolites, whereas brain, heart, and spleen had low concentrations. These studies have for the first time identified target tissues of quercetin, which may help to understand its mechanisms of action in vivo.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk