We report on the C-13 NMR visibility of the C-1 glycosidic carbon of alpha-particulate glycogen in perfused rat liver. We used rats fed ad libitum animals refed after a 48 h fast with a sucrose supplement with or without glucocorticoid treatment, and gsd/gsd rats with a hepatic glycogen storage disease due to phosphorylase kinase deficiency. Thus we studied a wide range of glycogen levels (25-140 mg/g liver). All livers were perfused with 15 mM glucose, to maintain constant glycogen levels. Failure to activate glycogen phosphorylase ensures stable glycogen levels in gsd/gsd livers. Natural abundance C-13 NMR signals were calibrated against a phantom containing a fixed amount of glycogen. Accumulated free induction decays were analysed after Fourier transformation by numerical integration, or by direct analysis of the signal in the time domain using a non-iterative method based on singular value decomposition. NMR quantification of the glycogen correlated well with the chemical determination over the whole concentration range. However, the precision (reproducibility) of glycogen determinations (be it by chemical methods or by NMR spectroscopy) may pose problems. Authors should be encouraged to report systematically on the precision of their methods.