Author(s): Krebs HA, Freedland RA, Hems R, Stubbs M
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Abstract 1. Gluconeogenesis from 10mm-lactate in the perfused liver of starved rats is inhibited by ethanol. The degree of inhibition reached a maximum of 66\% at 10mm-ethanol under the test conditions and decreased at higher ethanol concentrations. The concentration-dependence of the inhibition is paralleled by the concentration-dependence of the activity of alcohol dehydrogenase. The enzyme is also inhibited by ethanol concentrations above 10mm. 2. Gluconeogenesis from pyruvate is not inhibited by ethanol. 3. The degree of the inhibition of gluconeogenesis from lactate by ethanol depends on the concentration of lactate and other oxidizable substances, e.g. oleate, in the perfusion medium. 4. Ethanol also inhibits, to different degrees, gluconeogenesis from glycerol, dihydroxyacetone, proline, serine, alanine, fructose and galactose. 5. The inhibition of gluconeogenesis from lactate by ethanol is reversed by acetaldehyde. 6. Pyrazole, a specific inhibitor of alcohol dehydrogenase, also reverses the inhibition of gluconeogenesis by ethanol. 7. Gluconeogenesis in kidney cortex, where the activity of alcohol dehydrogenase is very low, is not inhibited by ethanol. 8. Kidney cortex, testis, ovary, uterus and certain tissues of the alimentary tract were the only rat tissues, apart from the liver, that showed measurable alcohol dehydrogenase activity. 9. The concentrations of pyruvate in the liver were decreased to about one-fifth by ethanol. 10. The concentration of lactate in the perfused liver was about 3mm below that of the perfusion medium 30min. after the addition of 10mm-lactate. 11. The great majority of the findings support the view that the inhibition of gluconeogensis by ethanol is caused by the alcohol dehydrogenase reaction, which decreases the [free NAD(+)]/[free NADH] ratio. The decrease lowers the concentration of pyruvate and this is the immediate cause of the inhibition of gluconeogenesis from lactate, alanine and serine: the fall in the concentration of pyruvate lowers the rate of the pyruvate carboxylase reaction, one of the rate-limiting reactions of gluconeogenesis. The cause of the inhibition of gluconeogenesis from other substrates is discussed.
This article was published in Biochem J
and referenced in Poultry, Fisheries & Wildlife Sciences