Direct metabolites of Ethanol as biological markers of alcohol use: Basic aspects and applications

Thon, N.; Weinmann, Wolfgang; Yegles, M.; Preuss, U.; Wurst, F. M. (2013). Direct metabolites of Ethanol as biological markers of alcohol use: Basic aspects and applications. Fortschritte der Neurologie, Psychiatrie, 81(9), pp. 493-502. Thieme 10.1055/s-0033-1335586

[img] Text
Thon et al..pdf - Published Version
Restricted to registered users only
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (158kB) | Request a copy

In addition to self reports and questionnaires, biomarkers are of relevance in
the diagnosis of and therapy for alcohol use disorders. Traditional biomarkers
such as gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase or mean corpuscular volume are indirect biomarkers and are subject to the influence of age, gender and non-alcohol related diseases, among others. Direct metabolites of ethanol such as Ethyl glucuronide (EtG), ethyl sulphate (EtS) and phosphatidylethanol (PEth) are direct metabolites of ethanol, that are positive after intake of ethyl alcohol. They represent useful diagnostic tools for identifying alcohol use even more accurately than traditional biomarkers. Each of these drinking indicators remains positive in serum and urine for a characteristic time spectrum after the
cessation of ethanol intake - EtG and EtS in urine up to 7 days, EtG in hair for
months after ethanol has left the body. Applications include clinical routine
use, emergency room settings, proof of abstinence in alcohol rehabilitation
programmes, driving under influence offenders, workplace testing, assessment of alcohol intake in the context of liver transplantation and foetal alcohol syndrome. Due to their properties, they open up new perspectives for prevention, interdisciplinary cooperation, diagnosis of and therapy for alcohol-related problems.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine > Forensic Chemistry and Toxicology

UniBE Contributor:

Weinmann, Wolfgang








Katrin Renfer

Date Deposited:

10 Jun 2014 11:08

Last Modified:

11 Nov 2015 09:08

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:





Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback