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Record Information
StatusDetected and Quantified
Creation Date2005-11-16 15:48:42 UTC
Update Date2018-03-03 22:09:40 UTC
Secondary Accession Numbers
  • HMDB00916
Metabolite Identification
Common NameUroporphyrin III
DescriptionUroporphyrin is the porphyrin produced by oxidation of the methylene bridges in uroporphyrinogen. Uroporphyrins have four acetic acid and four propionic acid side chains attached to their pyrrole rings. The enzyme uroporphyrinogen I synthase catalyzes the formation of hydroxymethylbilane from four molecules of porphobilinogen. Uroporphyrinogen III cosynthase then catalyzes the conversion of hydroxymethylbilane into uroporphyrinogen III. Otherwise, hydroxymethylbilane cyclizes nonenzymatically to form uroporphyrinogen I. Uroporphyrinogen I and III yield their respective uroporphyrins via autooxidation or their respective coproporphyrinogens via decarboxylation. Excessive amounts of uroporphyrin I are excreted in congenital erythropoietic porphyria, and both uroporphyrin I and uroporphyrin III are excreted in porphyria cutanea tarda. Uroporphyrin I and III are the most common isomers. Under certain conditions, uroporphyrin III can act as a phototoxin, a neurotoxin, and a metabotoxin. A phototoxin leads to cell damage upon exposure to light. A neurotoxin causes damage to nerve cells and nerve tissues. A metabotoxin is an endogenously produced metabolite that causes adverse health effects at chronically high levels. Chronically high levels of porphyrins are associated with porphyrias such as porphyria variegate, acute intermittent porphyria, porphyria cutanea tarda, and hereditary coproporphyria (HCP). There are several types of porphyrias (most are inherited). Hepatic porphyrias are characterized by acute neurological attacks (seizures, psychosis, extreme back and abdominal pain, and an acute polyneuropathy), while the erythropoietic forms present with skin problems (usually a light-sensitive blistering rash and increased hair growth). The neurotoxicity of porphyrins may be due to their selective interactions with tubulin, which disrupt microtubule formation and cause neural malformations (PMID: 3441503 ).
3,8,13,17-Tetrakis(carboxymethyl)porphyrin-2,7,12,18-tetrapropionic acidChEBI
3,8,13,17-Tetrakis(carboxymethyl)porphyrin-2,7,12,18-tetrapropanoic acidHMDB
3,8,13,17-Tetramethyl-2,7,12,18-porphinetetrapropionic acidHMDB
Coproporphyrin IIIHMDB
Chemical FormulaC40H38N4O16
Average Molecular Weight830.7469
Monoisotopic Molecular Weight830.228281188
IUPAC NameNot Available
Traditional NameNot Available
CAS Registry Number18273-06-8
InChI Identifier
Chemical Taxonomy
DescriptionThis compound belongs to the class of organic compounds known as porphyrins. These are compounds containing a fundamental skeleton of four pyrrole nuclei united through the alpha-positions by four methine groups to form a macrocyclic structure.
KingdomOrganic compounds
Super ClassOrganoheterocyclic compounds
ClassTetrapyrroles and derivatives
Sub ClassPorphyrins
Direct ParentPorphyrins
Alternative Parents
  • Porphyrin
  • Substituted pyrrole
  • Pyrrole
  • Heteroaromatic compound
  • Carboxylic acid derivative
  • Carboxylic acid
  • Azacycle
  • Carbonyl group
  • Hydrocarbon derivative
  • Organic oxide
  • Organopnictogen compound
  • Organooxygen compound
  • Organonitrogen compound
  • Organic oxygen compound
  • Organic nitrogen compound
  • Aromatic heteropolycyclic compound
Molecular FrameworkAromatic heteropolycyclic compounds
External DescriptorsNot Available

Biological location:


  Biofluid and excreta:

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  Biological process:

    Biochemical pathway:

Physiological effect

Health effect:

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Physical Properties
Experimental Properties
Melting PointNot AvailableNot Available
Boiling PointNot AvailableNot Available
Water SolubilityNot AvailableNot Available
LogPNot AvailableNot Available
Predicted Properties
Water Solubility0.037 g/LALOGPS
Spectrum TypeDescriptionSplash Key
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Positivesplash10-0hft-0000000920-cc03b9bed8ec1e3756f2View in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Positivesplash10-0gbi-0000000900-b9c5416788c41a1b932dView in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Positivesplash10-0ftr-0000000900-ddf789a09baa29543062View in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Negativesplash10-02t9-0000000940-171f6daf64defe53ba6eView in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Negativesplash10-014i-0000000910-e893ced4f4069e732360View in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Negativesplash10-014i-2000000900-e8e4a229f7baf3810285View in MoNA
Biological Properties
Cellular Locations
  • Cytoplasm
  • Mitochondria
Biofluid Locations
  • Urine
Tissue Location
  • Liver
Acute Intermittent PorphyriaThumbThumb?image type=greyscaleThumb?image type=simpleNot Available
Congenital Erythropoietic Porphyria (CEP) or Gunther DiseaseThumbThumb?image type=greyscaleThumb?image type=simpleNot Available
Hereditary Coproporphyria (HCP)ThumbThumb?image type=greyscaleThumb?image type=simpleNot Available
Porphyria Variegata (PV)ThumbThumb?image type=greyscaleThumb?image type=simpleNot Available
Porphyrin MetabolismThumbThumb?image type=greyscaleThumb?image type=simpleMap00860
Normal Concentrations
Not Available
Abnormal Concentrations
UrineDetected and Quantified0.00005 (0.00005-0.0007) umol/mmol creatinineNewborn (0-30 days old)BothHexachlorobenzene exposure details
Associated Disorders and Diseases
Disease ReferencesNone
Associated OMIM IDsNone
DrugBank IDNot Available
Phenol Explorer Compound IDNot Available
FoodDB IDFDB005664
KNApSAcK IDNot Available
Chemspider ID16736727
KEGG Compound IDC02469
BiGG IDNot Available
Wikipedia LinkNot Available
PubChem CompoundNot Available
ChEBI ID15436
Synthesis ReferenceKajiwara, Masahiro; Mizutani, Minoru; Kojima, Ichiro. Manufacture of uroporphyrin III with Arthrobacter. Jpn. Kokai Tokkyo Koho (1993), 7 pp.
Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)Not Available
General References
  1. Ohdoi C, Nyhan WL, Kuhara T: Chemical diagnosis of Lesch-Nyhan syndrome using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry detection. J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci. 2003 Jul 15;792(1):123-30. [PubMed:12829005 ]
  2. Schonning C, Leeming R, Stenstrom TA: Faecal contamination of source-separated human urine based on the content of faecal sterols. Water Res. 2002 Apr;36(8):1965-72. [PubMed:12092571 ]
  3. Luo J, Lim CK: Isolation and characterization of new porphyrin metabolites in human porphyria cutanea tarda and in rats treated with hexachlorobenzene by HPTLC, HPLC and liquid secondary ion mass spectrometry. Biomed Chromatogr. 1995 May-Jun;9(3):113-22. [PubMed:7655298 ]
  4. Salen G, Berginer V, Shore V, Horak I, Horak E, Tint GS, Shefer S: Increased concentrations of cholestanol and apolipoprotein B in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients with cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis. Effect of chenodeoxycholic acid. N Engl J Med. 1987 May 14;316(20):1233-8. [PubMed:3106810 ]
  5. Tsai SF, Bishop DF, Desnick RJ: Purification and properties of uroporphyrinogen III synthase from human erythrocytes. J Biol Chem. 1987 Jan 25;262(3):1268-73. [PubMed:3805019 ]
  6. Bozek P, Hutta M, Hrivnakova B: Rapid analysis of porphyrins at low ng/l and microg/l levels in human urine by a gradient liquid chromatography method using octadecylsilica monolithic columns. J Chromatogr A. 2005 Aug 19;1084(1-2):24-32. [PubMed:16114232 ]
  7. Hernandez-Zavala A, Del Razo LM, Garcia-Vargas GG, Aguilar C, Borja VH, Albores A, Cebrian ME: Altered activity of heme biosynthesis pathway enzymes in individuals chronically exposed to arsenic in Mexico. Arch Toxicol. 1999 Mar;73(2):90-5. [PubMed:10350189 ]
  8. To-Figueras J, Ozalla D, Mateu CH: Long-standing changes in the urinary profile of porphyrin isomers after clinical remission of porphyria cutanea tarda. Ann Clin Lab Sci. 2003 Summer;33(3):251-6. [PubMed:12956438 ]
  9. Winkelman JW, Collins GH: Neurotoxicity of tetraphenylporphinesulfonate TPPS4 and its relation to photodynamic therapy. Photochem Photobiol. 1987 Nov;46(5):801-7. [PubMed:3441503 ]