Enzymatic reduction and methylation of folate following pH-dependent, carrier-mediated transport in rat jejunum

Biochim Biophys Acta. 1979 Jun 13;554(1):249-57. doi: 10.1016/0005-2736(79)90022-1.


Intestinal transport of [3H] folate was studied using everted sacs of rat jejunum. The proximal small intestine transports folate against a concentration gradient by a system which is saturable, pH-dependent, energy-dependent, sodium-dependent, sensitive to temperature, and appears to be a common transport system for folate compounds. Chromatographic analysis of folate compounds in the serosal compartment after a 60 min incubation with folate in the mucosal medium in sodium phosohate buffer indicated that metabolism of folate to 5-methyltetrahydrofolate was extensive at pH 6.0 and negligible at pH 7.5. The percent conversion of folate to 5-methyltetrahydrofolate at pH 6.0 was reduced by increasing the concentration of folate in the mucosal medium, thus indicating saturation of the reduction and methylation process. These findings indicate that folate transport in rat jejunum occurs by an energy-dependent, carried-mediated system and that both folate transport and intestinal conversion of folate to 5-methyltetrahydrofolate are pH-dependent.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Transport, Active*
  • Folic Acid / metabolism*
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Intestinal Absorption*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism
  • Jejunum / metabolism*
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Methylation
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Rats


  • Folic Acid