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Pol Merkur Lekarski. 2007 Sep;23(135):235-8.

[Nonoxidative metabolites of ethanol as a markers of recent alcohol drinking].

[Article in Polish]

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  • 1Akademia Medyczna w Białymstoku, Zakład Diagnostyki Biochemicznej.


Alcoholism is one of the most frequent dependences among people. The early detection of alcohol abuse could allow for faster introduction of treatment makes essential diagnostic problem. Many biochemical laboratory markers of low consumption, abuse or alcohol dependence have been introduced for several last years. However, the routinely used laboratory tests require an improvement in the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity. Their clinical utility is limited by half-life in biological fluids. In this paper, the usefulness of nonoxidative metabolites of ethanol as a new markers of recent alcohol consumption has been presented. They are: fatty acid ethyl esters (FAEEs), ethyl glucuronide (EtG), ethyl sulphate (EtS) and phosphatidylo ethanol (PEth). The diagnostic value of those markers for detection of recent consumption seems to be higher than commonly used laboratory tests because the time of detection in biological fluids occur between that of the short-term (ethanol, methanol, HTOL/ HIAA index) and long-term markers (CDT, GGT MCV), that is, between one day and one week. The detection time of ester after the cessation of ethanol intake, so-called time window amounts: for FAEEs in serum up to 24 hours, for EtG in urine up to 5 days, for EtS in urine one and half day and for PEth in whole blood more than 2 weeks. Additionally, because EtG and FAEEs can be detected in hairs for months, they can be used as an indicators of chronically harmful alcohol consumption. The diagnostic usefulness of nonoxidative metabolites of ethanol has been also confirmed in programs of dependences treatment (as an abstinence monitoring tests), in forensic (as a postmortem markers for premortem drinking) and in prenatal diagnostics (as an indicators of fetal exposure to ethanol).

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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