The role of parathyroid hormone (PTH) on calcium excretion during chronic metabolic acidosis was investigated in intact and thyroparathyroidectomized (TPTX) acidotic and control dogs. Intact dogs fed NH4Cl for 3 days developed marked hypercalciuria as compared to intact control animals. After thyroparathyroidectomy, calcium excretion corrected per glomerular filtration rate decreased significantly in NH4Cl-treated dogs but not in the controls. This was observed in the face of a TPTX-induced fall in filtered load of calcium in both groups. After restoration of filtered load of calcium to normal by CaCl2 infusion, fractional calcium excretion at any level of fractional sodium excretion was higher in NH4Cl-treated TPTX dogs than that of TPTX controls, indicating a calciuric effect of acidosis independent of PTH. PTH (1 U/min x 60 min) was infused to examine the effect of this hormone on calcium excretion during NH4Cl-induced acidosis. In normal dogs, PTH significantly decreased absolute and fractional calcium excretion. In contrast, PTH infusion to acidotic dogs failed to decrease absolute and fractional calcium excretion. In both groups, phosphate excretion increased significantly. The higher calcium excretion of acidotic dogs during PTH infusion resulted from failure to enhance calcium reabsorption as shown by the fact that, at any level of plasma ionizable calcium, calcium excretion was higher in acidotic dogs than in controls. These findings indicate that during metabolic acidosis PTH does not exert its normal anticalciuric effect. This may contribute to the development of hypercalciuria despite PTH excess in certain clinical conditions associated with chronic metabolic acidosis.
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