1. The effect of bicarbonate (NaHCO3) feeding on intestinal absorption of calcium and phosphorus and vitamin D metabolism was investigated. Gut sac uptake of 45Ca and [32P]phosphate in vitro, as well as the plasma level of vitamin D metabolites, was determined in rats fed with NaHCO3 for 9 days and their pair-fed controls.
2. Duodenal uptake of 45Ca and [32P]phosphate by alkalotic rats was less than duodenal uptake by controls. 1,25(OH)2D plasma level was much higher in alkalotic rats than in their controls, and 25(OH)D slightly higher than in controls.
3. These data suggest that NaHCO3 feeding causes a substantial increase in 1,25(OH)2D plasma level, but interferes with calcium and phosphorus absorption in the duodenum.