Difference in the metabolism of vitamin K between liver and bone in vitamin K-deficient rats

Br J Nutr. 2002 Apr;87(4):307-14. doi: 10.1079/BJNBJN2001519.


The difference between vitamin K metabolism in the liver and that in the bone of vitamin K-deficient rats was examined. After 17 d administration of vitamin K-deficient food, vitamin K in the liver was almost depleted, and prothrombin time (PT) was prolonged. Serum total osteocalcin level was slightly decreased by vitamin K deficiency, whereas serum undercarboxylated osteocalcin level did not change. The level of menaquinone (MK)-4 as well as that of phylloquinone was decreased, but approximately 40 % of the initial level still existed in the femur after the 17 d period. A single-dose administration of vitamin K (250 nmol/kg body weight) markedly increased vitamin K level in the liver but not in the femur. These results suggest that the turnover of vitamin K in the bone is slower than that in the liver, and bone metabolism may be little affected by the short period of intake of vitamin K-deficient food. However, intake of a larger amount of vitamin K is required for its accumulation in the bone than in the liver. Furthermore, the counteracting effect of MK-7 on prolonged PT in vitamin K-deficient rats was found to be higher than phylloquinone or MK-4.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone and Bones / metabolism*
  • Cyanoacrylates / pharmacology
  • Indoleacetic Acids
  • Liver / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Osteocalcin / blood
  • Partial Thromboplastin Time
  • Prothrombin Time
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Vitamin K / administration & dosage
  • Vitamin K / blood
  • Vitamin K / metabolism*
  • Vitamin K 1 / blood
  • Vitamin K 1 / pharmacology
  • Vitamin K 2 / analogs & derivatives*
  • Vitamin K 2 / blood
  • Vitamin K 2 / pharmacology
  • Vitamin K Deficiency / metabolism*


  • Cyanoacrylates
  • Indoleacetic Acids
  • Osteocalcin
  • Vitamin K 2
  • Vitamin K
  • cyacrin
  • menatetrenone
  • MK 410
  • Vitamin K 1
  • menaquinone 7