Identification and quantification of kynurenic acid in human brain tissue

Brain Res. 1988 Jun 28;454(1-2):164-9. doi: 10.1016/0006-8993(88)90815-3.


Serial ion-exchange and high-performance liquid chromatography separations were employed for the tissue extraction and purification of kynurenic acid (KYNA). Subsequently, the compound isolated from postmortem human brain tissue was unequivocally identified as KYNA by nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometric analyses. Regional distribution analyses revealed the highest concentration of KYNA (1.58 +/- 0.43 pmol/mg tissue) in the caudate nucleus with lower levels in the thalamus, globus pallidus, hippocampus, parietal cortex and frontal cortex. Of the brain structures examined, the lowest concentration of KYNA (0.14 +/- 0.02 pmol/mg tissue) was found in the cerebellum.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Brain Chemistry*
  • Caudate Nucleus / analysis
  • Humans
  • Kynurenic Acid / isolation & purification*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postmortem Changes*
  • Thalamus / analysis


  • Kynurenic Acid