bile acids and saltsmedical dictionary

<chemical>

Steroid acids and salts. The primary bile acids are derived from cholesterol in the liver and usually conjugated with glycine or taurine. The secondary bile acids are further modified by bacteria in the intestine. They play an important role in the digestion and absorption of fat. They have also been used pharmacologically, especially in the treatment of gallstones.

Pharmacological action: cholagogues and choleretics, gastrointestinal agents.

(12 Dec 1998)