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Paediatric Laboratory Medicine

Pyruvate Determination

Clinical Significance

Quantitative enzymatic determination of pyruvate

Test Name

Pyruvate Determination

Alternate Name/ Synonym

  • Pyruvic Acid

Gene Name

This can indicate a respiratory chain or pyruvate metabolism, which can then be diagnosed separately


Mitochondrial Disease


Fluorimetric Measumements

Turn Around Time

Fibroblasts, amniocytes: 3 weeks - 3 months;


  • Lactic Acidosis
  • Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Deficiency
  • Leigh's

Specimen Type

Only for testing extracts from fibroblast and amniocyte cell cultures.

Minimum Specimen Requirements

Use one plate / flask per sample

Optimal Collection Time

For fibroblasts, amniocytes cultures: anytime


Samples must be kept at room temperature during measurement. Extracts can be stored for up to 48hrs at -20°C.

Special Requirements

The test should be done no later than 2 weeks after the cells have been sub cultured.

Shipping and Contact Information

The Hospital for Sick Children
Rapid Response Laboratory
170 Elizabeth Street, Room 3642
Toronto, ON
M5G 2G3
Phone: 416-813-7200
Phone: 1-855-381-3212

Reference Range

  • Fibroblasts: Reported as Lactate / Pyruvate ratio: 9.57-26.49 nmol/mg/hr


In the presence of excess NADH, LDH converts pyruvate to lactate. NADH absorbs light at 340nm but NAD+ does not. As NADH is oxidized to NAD+ the reduction of absorbency at 340 nm becomes a measure of the amount of pyruvate present in the fibroblast cells.