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Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2004 Jan;68(1):44-50.

Effects of excess nicotinamide administration on the urinary excretion of nicotinamide N-oxide and nicotinuric acid by rats.

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Laboratory of Food Science and Nutrition, Department of Life Style Studies, School of Human Cultures, The University of Shiga Prefecture, Hikone, Shiga, Japan.


We investigated a useful chemical index for an excessive nicotinamide intake and how this excessive nicotinamide intake affects the tryptophan-nicotinamide metabolism in rats. Weaning rats were fed on a tryptophan-limited and nicotinic acid-free diet containing no, 0.003%, 0.1%, 0.2%, or 0.3% nicotinamide for 21 days. Urine samples were collected on the last day and analyzed the intermediates and metabolites on the tryptophan-nicotinamide pathway. Nicotinamide N-oxide, nicotinic acid and nicotinuric acid, metabolites of nicotinamide, were detected when nicotinamide at more than 0.1% had been taken. An intake of nicotinamide of more than 0.1% increased the urinary excretion of quinolinic acid, an intermediate on the pathway. Nicotinamide N-oxide and nicotinuric acid increased with increasing dietary concentration of nicotinamide. These results show that the measurements of nicotinamide N-oxide and nicotinuric acid in urine would be useful indices for an excessive nicotinamide intake.

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