The metabolic fate of purified glucoraphanin in F344 rats

Radha M. Bheemreddy, Elizabeth H. Jeffery

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Dietary broccoli is commonly eaten cooked, exposing individuals to intact glucoraphanin rather than to its hydrolysis product, the anticarcinogenic isothiocyanate sulforaphane, since cooking destroys the hydrolyzing enzyme myrosinase. There is little information on the absorption and metabolism of glucoraphanin, due partly to the lack of purified compound. In this study, glucoraphanin was purified from broccoli seed and 150 μmol/kg was administered to male F344 rats. Glucoraphanin (5% of an oral dose) was recovered intact in urine, showing that it is absorbed intact, and no glucoraphanin or metabolites were found in feces. Total urinary products accounted for 20 and 45% of oral and intraperitonneal doses, respectively, including sulforaphane N-acetyl cysteine conjugate (12.5 and 2%), free sulforaphane (0.65 and 0.77%), sulforaphane nitrile (2 and 1.4%), and erucin (0.1 and 0.1%), respectively. Both glucoraphanin and its reduced form glucoerucin were identified in bile following intravenous glucoraphanin administration. We conclude that orally administered glucoraphanin is absorbed intact, undergoes enterohepatic circulation, and is hydrolyzed in the gut in F344 rats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2861-2866
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 18 2007


  • Absorption
  • Broccoli
  • Excretion
  • Glucoraphanin
  • Metabolism
  • Sulforaphane

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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