Uric Acid

Uric acid is one of the extensive chains of organic compounds. Before going in details for uric acid; it is essential to know what an organic compound is. An organic compound is a type of carbon compounds. For the existence of life on earth, these organic compounds play a very important role and a part of them is even an essential proportion of the chemistry of human body. These compounds play many roles and high or low concentrations of them can even cause many ailments in humane systems. So, they make a wide part of medical studies and scientific research.

Uric acid is made in the liver and is excreted out by kidneys. Our digestion leads to the excretion; the end product of which is uric acid. The high or low concentrations are known through urine test. Any kind of drug taking is prohibited before 24 hours of the test because it can affect the test result. The normal concentration in males is 2.1-8.5 mg/ dl while in females is 2.0-6.6 mg/ dl.

If going on the structure of uric acid; it is heterocyclic compound of carbon, oxygen and nitrogen. It has a formula of C5H4N4O3. Its IUPAC name is 7, 9-dihydro-1Hpurine-2, 6, 8(3H) trione. It is highly soluble in water. The solubility in hot water is relatively high as compared to cold water. Its ions are known as urates and the salts formed by it are called acid urates. In human body uric acid is produced due to the breakdown of nucleotides. Like other compounds in body, its high concentration causes kidney stones and other related diseases.

Uric acid is mainly used in the formation of ammonia and urea. These are the major products obtained from the uric acid in chemical industry. These fertilizers are used extensively in agriculture and make a big proportion of trade.

When looking at the reasons of high uric acid in blood, the first prevalent is the genetics. Many people receive it as a hereditary disease and this goes on generations after generations. The chances of treatment of hereditary uric acid diseases are not guaranteed. The second factor is of human intake or diet. High intake of fructose (common sugar has 50% fructose in constituents) and purine can lead to high accumulation of uric acid. When kidneys are not in proper functioning conditions and reduces the secretion of uric acid; its level elevates in blood. Long starvation or any other condition which leads to loss of weight can be a reason of temporary high concentration of uric acid. Such conditions can happen during fasting and can be recovered when body gets back to its routine. High presence of iron or low percentage of copper is also one of the reasons of high or low uric acid concentration. The high concentration is called hypouricemia while the later is known as hypouricemia.

Let’s have a look at the ailments found in human body due to high accumulation of uric acid.

Uric acid is the main functioning compound in all kidney related diseases and stones. High concentration of uric acid in blood leads to a type of arthritis known as gout. This is due to quite high accumulation. The condition is very painful and happens when needle like crystals of uric acid is precipitated in joints and capillaries. It is found that the chances of having gout are high among those who take frequent sugar beverages while its occurrence is relatively low in those who use sugar beverages infrequently.

In the late 20th century, the concentration of high uric serum with the insulin was known. Anyhow it remained a factor of debate whether high insulin is a risk factor for insulin resistance or not. Lately it is known that high uric serum can lead to diabetes2 which is independent of obesity and hypertension.

High accumulation of uric acid leads to the stone formation in kidneys. Here uric acid crystallizes and acts as an obstacle on the passage. These stones are radiolucent and do not appear when a patient undergoes X-ray or CT scan. So, for the diagnosis of such stones ultra sound is the best option.

As far as low concentration is concerned; following are the reasons which may cause the reduction.

Low intake of zinc results in the low uric acid level. This condition is specially seen in young women. Another reason can be the deficiency of iron. This is also a reason of anemia in young women. The low level causes Multiple Sclerosis. In this disease central nervous system is affected and patient feels fatigued and tired while human body leaves its functioning properly.

Another syndrome caused by low level is Fanconi’s syndrome. This is the absence of sufficient red blood cells in the body which results in the deficiency of oxygen in blood and causes anemia. So, uric acid is directly concerned with blood ailment in the body.

This problem can be overcome by maintaining the deficiency of Zn level and focusing Fe/ Cu proportions in body. The major way of treatment is high intake of beef, meat, sardines, sweetbreads and gravy. While vegetables do have low concentration of uric acid.

Uric acid level increases in old age and thus it increases the risk of cognitive diseases. In this way it can be said that uric acid is the marker of cognitive diseases in elderly people. Uric acid disorder is most commonly found in senior and old citizens while the reason of it is not clearly known. Uric acid shows a tendency to have antioxidant properties. It also participates in reducing the chances of Cancer and heart attack.

Among the growing diseases of modern age; stone formation in kidneys is also commonly found in all ages of people. Though elderly people are more prone to it but even the young ones are not safe.

Till now the exact link of uric acid with all the body functions is not known and the fields where the research is still carried out also include it as a subject of study.

By: Ammarah Khan


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