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August 19, 1950

THE ABSORPTION AND EXCRETION OF RUTIN AND RELATED FLAVONOID SUBSTANCES

Author Affiliations

La Jolla, Calif.

From the Scripps Metabolic Clinic, La Jolla, Calif. This investigation was supported in part by the Division of Research Grants and Fellowships of the National Institutes of Health, United States Public Health Service, and the Eli Lilly Company.

JAMA. 1950;143(16):1411-1415. doi:10.1001/jama.1950.82910510004009
Abstract

Although there is an extensive literature on the therapeutic effects of flavonoid substances, erroneously referred to as vitamin P, such as citrin,® rutin, hesperidin and related compounds and crude extracts (e. g., of citrus peels and rose hips), little has been published on their absorption, metabolism and excretion. This becomes important in connection with claims of the vitamin-like nature of the substances, and the widespread use of proprietary preparations containing rutin and related compounds for pathologic conditions involving capillary fragility and hemorrhage, hypertension and radiation disease.

Many of the flavonoids are common plant pigments, along with the related anthocyanins of grapes, berries, beets, citrus and other fruits, vegetables and flowers.

It has been demonstrated that anthocyanin pigments such as cyanidin and delphinidin are not appreciably absorbed on oral ingestion by most higher animals, and when injected parenterally in animals they are not metabolized, being renally excreted unchanged.1 Similar observations

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