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homovanillic acid test


Definition: a test for homovanillic acid based on the fact that dopamine is present in sympathetic nervous tissue as precursor of norepinephrine; because norepinephrine has a metabolic pathway that yields homovanillic acid, some tumors (neuroblastomas and ganglioneuromas may cause elevations in levels of urinary dopamine and homovanillic acid.

Synonym(s): HVA test

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review date: Sep 19, 2016.