Test For Presence Of Bile Salts In Urine

Aim

To perform a test detecting the presence of bile salts in the given sample of urine.

Theory

What is Bile?

Bile is a fluid, typically appears as yellowish-green in color. It comprises of organic molecules such as bile acids, bilirubin and cholesterol, and water.

Functions of Bile:

How are bile salts formed?

Bile is generated by the liver and is held by the gall bladder. Whenever food is ingested, bile is released into the duodenum. Bile salts formation is initiated with the disintegration of red blood cells. Rupturing of the damaged and old red blood cells is brought about as they pass through the liver or spleen.

Iron is removed and hemoglobin is disintegrated by the macrophages from the heme element. This portion of the heme which is free from iron is transformed into a green pigment known as biliverdin and subsequently into a yellow-orange pigment known as bilirubin.

The bilirubin in the liver is extracted as a bile pigment that moves to the small intestine and further into the large intestine.

1. Smith’s Test

Material Required

  • Smith’s reagent
  • Urine sample
  • Test tube
  • Measuring cylinder
  • Dropper

Procedure

  • From the reagent bottle, accurately add 1ml of Smith’s reagent using a measuring cylinder
  • Into the test tube, add the measured reagent
  • From the sample urine bottle, add some urine using a dropper
  • Now incline the test tube slightly so as to pour urine through the sides of the tube
  • Make note of the changes.

Observation And Conclusion

The changes taking place in the test tube are observed. Presence of bile salt in the given sample of urine is indicated through a green colored ring forming at the intersection of both the layers.

2. Pettenkofer’s Test

Material Required

  • Concentrated H2SO4
  • Urine sample
  • Measuring cylinder
  • Test tube
  • Spatula
  • Dropper
  • Sucrose

Procedure

  • From the sample urine bottle, accurately add 2ml of urine sample using a measuring cylinder
  • Into the test tube, add the measured sample
  • With the help of a spatula, add some sucrose into the tube holding the urine sample
  • With the help of a measuring cylinder, accurately measure 2ml of concentrated H2SO4 taken from the reagent bottle
  • Incline the tube slightly so as to pour the measured concentrated H2SO4 through the sides of the tube
  • Observe the changes taking place in the test tube.

Observation And Conclusion

Changes taking place in the test tube is observed. The bile salts in the given sample of urine are indicated by the appearance of red color.

 

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