Minimal sampling protocol for accurate estimation of urea production: a study with oral [13C]urea in fed and fasted piglets

Michiel J.S. Oosterveld, Reinoud J.B.J. Gemke, Jack R. Dainty, Willem Kulik, Cornelis Jakobs, Kees de Meer

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Background & aims: An oral [13C]urea protocol may provide a simple method for measurement of urea production. The validity of single pool calculations in relation to a reduced sampling protocol was assessed. Methods: In eight fed and five fasted piglets, plasma urea enrichments from a 10 h sampling protocol were measured following an intragastric [13C]urea bolus. Blood [13C]bicarbonate was measured to trace gut [13C]urea oxidation. Two-compartment and regression (single pool) computations were performed. Pool sizes were compared to urea distribution over total body water (TBW). Shorter protocol duration was tested in regression simulations. Results: Differences in urea kinetics between fed and fasted piglets did not reach statistical significance. Mean (±SE) urea pool from TBW times plasma urea concentration was 2.2±0.16 mmol kg−1. Two-compartment modelling yielded similar results for pool size (despite the oxidation of a small amount of urea tracer). Urea appearance rate was 306±18 μmol kg−1 h−1. Regression calculations overestimated urea appearance rate vs. compartmental model (). When samples <2 h were discarded, results were comparable to compartmental calculations even if protocol length was 6 h (325±24 μmol kg−1 h−1, NS). Conclusions: Regression calculations using plasma enrichments sampled between 2 and 6 h after oral [13C]urea administration provide accurate rates of urea production, and are not affected by tracer oxidation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-104
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Nutrition
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2005

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