Effect of dietary magnesium level on nephrocalcinosis and growth in rats.
We studied the extent of kidney calcification by varying dietary levels of Mg, based on pathological examinations and calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) balance tests. AIN-76 diets containing varying levels of Mg--0.3 (-M), 1.3 (1/20M), 2.4 (1/10M), 9.2 (1/5M), 19 (control), 38 (2M), 102 (5M), and 187 (10M) mmol/kg diet--were fed to 3-week-old male Fischer-344 rats for 14d. Although the magnitude of abnormality was highest in kidney of rats fed the -M diet, the damage was normalized as the dietary level of Mg increased, with increasing serum Mg concentration and urinary excretion of Mg. We found almost no deposition of Ca in rats fed the 10M diet. The mechanism by which the high dietary Mg induces these effects most likely involves a competition between Mg and Ca for reabsorption in proximal and/or distal tubules, since these diets increased the urinary excretion of Ca. However, these high Mg diets decreased food intake and body weight gain compared with the control diet, although these indices were not decreased in rats fed the 2M diet. The results suggest that a dietary magnesium level approximately twice the normal level effectively reduces kidney calcification while maintaining normal growth in rats.
J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 1998 Aug;44(4):503-14.