Bile Acids

Total bile acids in serum determined using an enzymatic method on the Abbott Alinity ci-Series.
Clinical details: 
Bile acids are synthesised in the liver as a breakdown product of cholesterol and are secreted into the gall bladder. The primary bile acids synthesized in the human liver are cholic acid and chenodeoxycholic acid. They are released into the small intestine where they solubilise dietary lipids such as cholesterol aiding their absorption. Bile acids are reabsorbed from the portal blood by hepatocyte extraction and re-excreted into bile, passing through the enterohepatic circulation several times before final excretion. As liver function decreases the efficiency of extraction of bile acids from the blood declines, concentrations within blood therefore increase. Bile acid levels also rise when bile flow is reduced or blocked (cholestasis) and additional bile acids escape into the bloodstream.

The measurement of total bile acids is required for the identification of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy and in patients with progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis (PFIC) where plasma total bile acid concentrations are increased.
Reference range: 

See Chemistry Reference Ranges Document at Automated Chemistry Laboratory at Guy's and St Thomas'

Sample type and Volume required: 
250 uL serum
Turnaround time: 
1 day
Special sample instructions: 

Samples should be collected under fasting conditions

Storage and transport: 
Stability in serum: 7 days at 2 to 8°C, 3 months at -20 °C
Blood Sciences Department-Guy's And St Thomas' Hospital
St Thomas' Hospital
North Wing - 5th Floor
Westminster Bridge Road
London SE1 7EH
Contact: 020 7188 9247

Guy's Hospital
Southwark Wing - 4th Floor
Great Maze Pond
London SE1 9RT
Contact: 020 7188 4781
Automated Chemistry Laboratory at Guy's and St Thomas' Clinical Advisory Service
Monday – Friday, 09:00-17:00 h: 07738897061
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For clinical advice or interpretation of results, please contact the laboratory in the first instance.

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Last updated: 22/07/2023