Carnitine


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carnitine

[′kär·nə‚tēn]
(biochemistry)
C7H15NO3α-Amino-β-hydroxybutyric acid trimethylbetaine; a constituent of striated muscle and liver, identical with vitamin B T.

Carnitine

 

betaine-γ-amino-β-oxybutyric acid, (CH3)3NCH2CH(OH)CH2CO2, a crystalline compound with basic properties; dissolves readily in water and alcohol. Its molecular mass is 161.21, and its melting point, 195°-197°C (with decomposition).

Carnitine is primarily found in animal muscle, from which it was first extracted by V. S. Gulevich (1905); it is also found in bacteria and plants. It takes part in fatty exchange within an organism by acting as a carrier of fatty acid radicals through the membranes of the mitochondria. These membranes are impermeable to activated fatty acids (compounds with coenzyme A). With the aid of carnitine, therefore, fatty acids enter the scope of activity of the oxidizing enzymes localized within the mitochondria. Carnitine apparently also participates in the reverse transport of fatty acids. It is an essential dietary constituent and a growth factor in certain insects; therefore it is considered to be a vitamin (vitamin BT).

References in periodicals archive ?
The aim of this work was the assessment of free carnitine, total carnitine, acyl carnitine and acylcarnitine/free carnitine ratio in serum and urine of children with cystic fibrosis.
Getting back to the Cleveland Clinic study which claims that carnitine causes atherosclerosis: As I said before, the media went hog wild, spreading faulty information and scaring lots of folks, including not only patients who are carnitine takers, but parents of youngsters who have been on carnitine for years.
The study tested the carnitine and TMAO levels of omnivores, vegans and vegetarians, and examined the clinical data of 2,595 patients undergoing elective cardiac evaluations.
Carnitine, acetylcarnitine and the activity of carnitine acyltransferases in seminal plasma and spermatozoa of men, rams and rats.
However, the production of these acylcarnitines is dependent on the availability of free carnitine in the mitochondria, thus leaving the possibility of having undetectable alterations in acylcarnitine accumulation if the cell becomes carnitine depleted (2).
Carnitine was discovered in muscle extracts and reported separately in 1905.
Carnitine is a common dietary supplement that is advertised as being safe and effective.
Carnitine, whether taken from diet or endogenously synthesized by liver or kidneys, increases the physiologic performances of skeletal and cardiac muscles.
Stedman Nutrition and Metabolism Center, also performed tests on human muscle cells that showed supplementing with carnitine might help older people with prediabetes, diabetes, and other disorders that make glucose (sugar) metabolism difficult.
Carnitine promotes energy utilization and is important for tissues with high energy requirements (Chiu et al.
An in-depth cross-sectional study of 14 non-vegetarian trained athletes found no correlation between dietary carnitine intake or dietary macronutrients and macronutrients, and plasma carnitine or urinary carnitine excretion.
Tokyo, Japan, June 15, 2006 - (JCN) - Nisshin OillliO has announced the results of its latest research on Renacare Carnitine Jelly, a health food for kidney disease patients developed by Nisshin Science.