Bioactivity and metabolism of trans-resveratrol orally administered to Wistar rats

Mol Nutr Food Res. 2005 May;49(5):482-94. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.200500003.


The purpose of this study was to investigate the implications of selected chemopreventive parameters and metabolic conversion of resveratrol in vivo. In two 8-week long feeding experiments with rats, a low-resveratrol diet containing 50 mg resveratrol per kg body weight (bw) and day and a high-resveratrol diet with 300 mg per kg bw and day were administered. For chemopreventive evaluation selected phase I and phase II enzymes of the biotransformation system, the total antioxidant activity, and the vitamin E status of the animals were determined. The level of resveratrol and its metabolites in the feces, urine, plasma, liver, and kidneys was identified and quantitated by high-performance liquid chromatography-diode array detection (HPLC-DAD) using synthesized resveratrol conjugate standards. Feeding of different dosages of resveratrol revealed no effect on the different chemopreventive parameters, except for the total antioxidant activity, which was elevated in plasma by 19% after feeding 50 mg resveratrol per kg bw and day. The formation of trans-resveratrol-3-sulfate, trans-resveratrol-4'-sulfate, trans-resveratrol-3,5-disulfate, trans-resveratrol-3,4'-disulfate, trans-resveratrol-3,4',5-trisulfate, trans-resveratrol-3-O-beta-D-glucuronide, and resveratrol aglycone was detected by HPLC analysis, depending on the biological material. Total resveratrol recovery in urine and feces of rats fed on 50 mg resveratrol per kg bw and day was 15% and 13%, respectively. For rats fed the higher dosage of 300 mg resveratrol per kg bw and day recovery was 54% and 17%, respectively. This is the first study performed with synthesized standards of relevant resveratrol conjugates. The lack of effect on the chemopreventive parameters is probably due to the formation of various resveratrol conjugates reducing its bioavailability in the rat.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / analysis
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Diet
  • Erythrocytes / chemistry
  • Feces / chemistry
  • Glucuronides / metabolism
  • Glutathione Transferase / metabolism
  • Kidney / chemistry
  • Liver / chemistry
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Male
  • NADPH-Ferrihemoprotein Reductase / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Resveratrol
  • Stilbenes / administration & dosage*
  • Stilbenes / analysis
  • Stilbenes / metabolism*
  • Sulfates / metabolism


  • Antioxidants
  • Glucuronides
  • Stilbenes
  • Sulfates
  • NADPH-Ferrihemoprotein Reductase
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • Resveratrol