13C-NMR: a simple yet comprehensive method for analysis of intermediary metabolism

Trends Biochem Sci. 1991 Jan;16(1):5-10. doi: 10.1016/0968-0004(91)90004-f.


13C-NMR is a particularly attractive tool for metabolic studies because of its inherent simplicity: all labeled products at sufficient concentration may be identified and analysed in a single spectrum. However, the real power behind the approach presented here is the ability to measure groups of individual 13C-isotopomers (isotope isomers). The information that this provides is superior to conventional tracer techniques, allowing a very detailed description of metabolic events. Several examples are given of the value of this convenient and straightforward analysis for some problems of current interest in intermediary metabolism.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Carbon Isotopes
  • Citric Acid Cycle*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Fatty Acids / metabolism*
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy / methods*
  • Myocardium / metabolism
  • Rats


  • Carbon Isotopes
  • Fatty Acids