The administration of vitamin A to vitamin A-deficient rats resulted in a decreased concentration of inorganic sulfate-sulfur in the serum from a value of 2.5 mg. per cent to 1.8 mg. per cent, the latter being close to the value of 2.0 mg. per cent found in normal rats of the same age.
The uptake of sulfate and phosphate by femurs and tibiae of vitamin A-deficient rats was less than that in normal rats of the same age. An increased uptake followed the administration of vitamin A: radioautography indicated that in the case of sulfate, its uptake was particularly increased in the epiphyseal cartilage; an increased uptake of phosphate was particularly evident in the diaphysis immediately adjacent to the epiphyseal cartilage plate.
The specific activity of the sulfate-sulfur in the chondroitin sulfate samples isolated from the skeletons of vitamin A-deficient rats fell progressively as the deficiency continued. Following administration of vitamin A, the specific activity approached and exceeded the value given by the sample from the skeletons of normal rats of the same age.
A substantial increase was found in the value of the specific activity of the sulfate-sulfur of sulfomucopolysaccharides isolated from skins of vitamin A-deficient rats that had been given vitamin A.
Following administration of vitamin A to rats deficient in this vitamin, an increased accumulation of some sulfur-containing material was found in regions of active calcification.