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Liver Test - Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT)

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About Our Liver Test - Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT)

Note: Fasting is not required for this test.

This test measures levels of Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT), an enzyme in the blood, to help determine liver disease or damage.

The ALT test is also used to:

  • Monitor effects of medicines that can harm the liver
  • Check for liver damage
  • Determine if jaundice is caused by liver disease or a blood disorder
  • Identify diseases of the liver, such as hepatitis or cirrhosis caused by alcohol, drugs or viruses

Significant elevations of ALT occur only in diseases of the liver. ALT is often measured in conjunction with Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) to determine whether the source of the AST is the liver or the heart.


The liver filters the blood coming from the digestive tract, before passing it along to the rest of the body. This organ also detoxifies chemicals and metabolizes drugs and secretes bile that ends up back in the intestines. The liver also makes proteins that are important for blood clotting and other functions.


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