Biotin deficiency in the cat and the effect on hepatic propionyl CoA carboxylase

J Nutr. 1977 Feb;107(2):330-4. doi: 10.1093/jn/107.2.330.


Biotin deficiency was produced in growing kittens by feeding a diet containing dried, raw egg white. After receiving either an 18.5% egg white diet for 25 weeks, or a 32% egg white diet for 12 weeks, they exhibited dermal lesions characterized by alopecia, scaly dermatitis and achromotrichia, which increased in severity with the deficiency. Females developed accumulations of dried salivary, nasal and lacrymal secretions in the facial region although a male did not. There was a loss of body weight in all cats as the deficiency progressed. Hepatic propionyl CoA carboxylase activities were measured on biopsy samples of liver during biotin deficiency and after biotin supplementation. In the deficient state, activities were 4% and 24% of that following biotin supplementation. Propionyl carboxylase activity in the liver of the cat was comparable to that reported in the rat and chick in the deficient and normal states. Subcutaneous injection of 0.25 mg biotin every other day while continuing to receive the egg white diet caused remission of clinical signs, a body weight gain and increased food intake.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biotin / deficiency*
  • Body Weight
  • Cats
  • Coenzyme A
  • Diet
  • Female
  • Ligases / metabolism*
  • Liver / enzymology*
  • Male
  • Propionates


  • Propionates
  • Biotin
  • Ligases
  • Coenzyme A