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Gen Comp Endocrinol. 1994 Oct;96(1):12-8.

Dietary vitamin D dependence of cat and dog due to inadequate cutaneous synthesis of vitamin D.

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Department of Clinical Sciences of Companion Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, The Netherlands.


As in herbivores and omnivores, the biosynthesis of vitamin D3 in the skin exposed to ultraviolet (uv) light is generally expected to also occur in the dog and the cat. The purpose of this in vitro study was to measure the concentrations of vitamin D3 and its precursor 7-dehydrocholesterol (7DHC) in dog and cat skin before and after a quantitatively and qualitatively standardized exposure to uv light. The results are compared to those obtained by the same method in the skin of the rat. The efficiency of extracting 7DHC and vitamin D3 from skin was 72 +/- 8% and 67 +/- 3%, respectively. In dog and cat skin the concentrations of nonesterified 7DHC were below the detection limit of the HPLC system. Therefore, skin extracts were saponified and total 7DHC and vitamin D3 concentrations were measured by normal-phase HPLC. Before irradiation with uv-B light the total concentrations of 7DHC were 1858 +/- 183, 1958 +/- 204, and 17,620 +/- 2345 ng/cm2 skin (mean +/- SEM; n = 5) for the dog, the cat, and the rat, respectively. The corresponding concentrations of vitamin D3 were 211 +/- 44, 193 +/- 18, and 161 +/- 32 ng/cm2 skin for the dog, the cat, and the rat, respectively. Irradiation of standard solutions of 7DHC with 0.15 J uv-B light/min resulted in a time-dependent decrease in 7DHC and a concomitant increase in previtamin D3.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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