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Alkaline Phosphatase Isoenzyme Patterns in Hyperthyroidism

DAVID S. COOPER, M.D.; MARSHALL M. KAPLAN, M.D.; E. CHESTER RIDGWAY, M.D.; FARAHE MALOOF, M.D.; and GILBERT H. DANIELS, M.D.
[+] Article and Author Information

Grant support: U.S. Public Health Service Grants AM 07038 and AM 10571.

Presented in part at the Eastern Section Meeting of the American Federation for Clinical Research, October 1978, Boston, Massachusetts.

▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to David S. Cooper, M.D.; Thyroid Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital; Boston, MA 02114.


Boston, Massachusetts


©1979 American College of PhysiciansAmerican College of Physicians


Ann Intern Med. 1979;90(2):164-168. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-90-2-164
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Fifteen of 36 hyperthyroid patients had elevations in serum alkaline phosphatase activity. There was no difference in mean thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3), age, or duration of illness between the groups with high alkaline phosphatase and normal alkaline phosphatase levels. After treatment, serum alkaline phosphatase levels rose as T4 levels declined; at 3 months, the mean serum alkaline phosphatase value rose from 7.1 Bodansky units to 10.3 Bodansky units (P < 0.005), while the mean T4 value fell from 18 µg/dl to 7.2 µg/dl (P < 0.005). In some patients, serum alkaline phosphatase values have remained elevated for more than 1 year, despite continued normality in thyroid variables. Before therapy, isoenzyme patterns analyzed by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis were qualitatively normal. As therapy was instituted, the isoenzyme patterns changed markedly, with increased amounts of bone alkaline phosphatase appearing in the serum as T4 levels were declining and total alkaline phosphatase was rising. Thyroid tissue homogenates from patients with Graves' disease were found to have very low levels of alkaline phosphatase activity and an isoenzyme pattern quite distinct from that found in the serum.

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