Alanine aminotransferase ( ALT)
Why do we do this test?
1. Elevation of ALT indicates liver cell damage. Usually ALT ordered with AST
However ALP is more specific to liver than ALT. Sometimes ALT/ AST ratio is taken to predict some disease.
2. ALT is one of the tests included in liver profile, ordered in patient who is presented with symptoms and signs of liver disorders.
Eg: Loss of appetite
Jaundice (yellowish discoloration of sclera and skin)
Abdominal pain and abdominal distension
Nausea and vomiting
Itching of skin (pruritus)
Dark urine and pale color stools
3. Use as a screening tool for patients who are at risk of liver disease
Family history of liver disease
Metabolic syndrome (diabetes and Obesity)
On medication that can cause liver damage
Heavy alcohol abuse
Infected with viruses may cause viral hepatitis
Specimen Type
Serum, Plasma (EDTA), Plasma (Li Heparin)
Instructions for specimen collection & Patient preparation
Blood drawn in a vein
No special preparation needed
Specimen transportation & Processing
Able to transport in room temperature
Specimen storage & stability
ALT should analyze within the day of sample collection. Not stable in room temperature, 4oC, -20 oC. stability is maintained at -70C.
Specimen storage duration
Reference Intervals & Target Values
< 35 U/L
Critical Limits
Possible Pre-analytical Errors
Possible Analytical Errors
possible interfering substance are bilirubin, heamolysis, lipemia and pyruvate
Available Government Laboratories
Recommended turnaround time
1- 2 hours

Test Method
Measure the catalytic activity of the enzyme



Last Updated : 2020-09-23 04:15:29






College of Chemical Pathologists of Sri Lanka

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