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Calcium metabolism (French to English)


Calcium absorption
Recent physiological data. Dietary consequences.
Gastroenterol. clin. biol., 1992, 16, 238-247.

Calcium absorption

Recent physiological data. Dietary consequences.

The study of calcium absorption has recently witnessed a resurgence of interest. Progress achieved by molecular biology has allowed the structure of proteins brought into play in transport, and the conditions for activation of their respective genes, to be precisely defined. The increase in life span from the physiological limits defined by the loss of teeth (1) has meant that bone loss in old age, or bone wasting, can carry on up to the fracture threshold. The suppression of oestrogen release in the menopause accelerates bone loss in the female population and participates in the genesis of post-menopausal fractural osteoporosis.

The prevention of these two forms of osteoporosis consists in part of a nutritional basis, the increase in dietary calcium intake, with a twin goal: to increase bone reserves at the end of growth, and to decrease the utilization of bone reserves to adjust calcium levels.

This update summarizes the cellular and molecular mechanisms which ensure intestinal calcium absorption, and presents the data that lead to dietary applications.