UNIT 8.4 Measurement of Uroporphyrinogen Decarboxylase Activity

  1. John D. Phillips,
  2. James P. Kushner

Published Online: 1 MAY 2001

DOI: 10.1002/0471140856.tx0804s00

Current Protocols in Toxicology

Current Protocols in Toxicology

How to Cite

Phillips, J. D. and Kushner, J. P. 2001. Measurement of Uroporphyrinogen Decarboxylase Activity. Current Protocols in Toxicology. 00:8.4:8.4.1–8.4.13.

Author Information

  1. University of Utah Medical School, Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 MAY 2001
  2. Published Print: MAY 1999


Uroporphyrinogen decarboxylase (UROD) catalyzes decarboxylation of the four acetate side chains of urophyrinogen to form coproporphyrinogen. Activity of UROD can be measured using an enzymatically prepared substrate or a chemically prepared one. For the former, bacterial porphobilinogen deaminase is prepared and used to prepare the porphyrinogen substrate for the enzymatic assay. Erythrocyte lysates can be used to measure hemoglobin content as an indicator of UROD activity.