The multiple diverse functions of the liver have given rise to correspondingly numerous and diverse tests for these functions. These tests have been reviewed recently by several authors1 and evaluated in cases of clinical disease and in experimentally produced hypofunction of the liver. In spite of the fact that one of the most important functions of the liver is the deaminization of amino-acids and their conversion to urea—a phase of the physiology of the liver which during the past few years has received much attention and investigation—a standard test for the conversion of urea by the liver has not been elaborated. The hepatic metabolism of carbohydrates,2 dye elimination,3 pigment metabolism,4 detoxifying powers,5 excretion of urobilin6 and its other functions, including its rôle in ammonia formation,7 have been the physiologic bases of corresponding tests,1 but the function of urea formation has largely been neglected.
From 1911 to 1917, Van Slyke,8 with
COHEN P, LEVIN SJ. THE PROTEIN TEST FOR UREA FORMATION FUNCTION OF THE LIVER: PRELIMINARY REPORT. Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1927;39(6):787–798. doi:10.1001/archinte.1927.00130060039003
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