Aspects of histamine metabolism
- Cite this article as:
- Green, J.P., Prell, G.D., Khandelwal, J.K. et al. Agents and Actions (1987) 22: 1. doi:10.1007/BF01968810
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Progress in learning the role of histamine in physiology and pathology has been impeded by difficulties in accurately measuring histamine and by the deficiencies of methods to measure its metabolites. The availability of specific, sensitive and rapid methods to measure histamine has helped in understanding the role of histamine in disease. Measuring histamine alone may provide an incomplete indication of the role of histamine in disease or in any other process. For histamine is metabolized by multiple pathways, and the kinetics of these enzymatic activities (as well as the rate of synthesis of histamine) determine the steady-state levels of histamine in tissue and in body fluids. Measurements of both histamine and its metabolites would contribute, and may be essential, to the understanding of the role of histamine in disease, just as measurements of the metabolites of other biogenic amines have been critical to understanding of their roles in diseases. Yet another reason that compels measurements of metabolites is evidence that some of the metabolites of histamine are pharmacologically, perhaps physiologically, active.