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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Selenium utilization in humans--a long-term, self-labeling experiment with stable isotopes.

A stable (nonradioactive) isotope of selenium in a chemical form common in foods (selenomethionine) or inorganic selenite was taken orally (200 micrograms/d) for 3 wk to label deep body pools. By deep body pools we mean selenium compartments that are large and/or have a slow turnover (exchange) rate. Blood plasma was removed, stored for 11 mo, and later reinfused as a labeled tracer dose with the selenium label in all of the biologically significant chemical forms. Accessible tissues such as red blood cells were highly labeled (20-25%) in the subjects receiving selenomethionine. Selenium from deep body pools is excreted primarily via the urine (80%). Reexcretion of previously absorbed selenium back into the gastrointestinal tract can be measured, avoiding a major source of error in conventional balance studies used to estimate nutrient absorption.[1]


  1. Selenium utilization in humans--a long-term, self-labeling experiment with stable isotopes. Veillon, C., Patterson, K.Y., Button, L.N., Sytkowski, A.J. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. (1990) [Pubmed]
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