Fatty Acid Metabolism
Fatty acid metabolism consists of catabolic processes that generate energy, and anabolic processes that create biologically important molecules (triglycerides, phospholipids, second messengers, local hormones and ketone bodies). Fatty acids are a family of molecules classified within the lipid macronutrient class. One role of fatty acids in animal metabolism is energy production, captured in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). When compared to other macronutrient classes (carbohydrates and protein), fatty acids yield the most ATP on an energy per gram basis, when they are completely oxidized to CO2 and water by beta oxidation and the citric acid cycle. Fatty acids (mainly in the form of triglycerides) are therefore the foremost storage form of fuel in most animals, and to a lesser extent in plants. In addition, fatty acids are important components of the phospholipids that form the phospholipid bilayers out of which all the membranes of the cell are constructed (the cell wall, and the membranes that enclose all the organelles within the cells, such as the nucleus, the mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, and the Golgi apparatus). Fatty acids can also be cleaved, or partially cleaved, from their chemical attachments in the cell membrane to form second messengers within the cell, and local hormones in the immediate vicinity of the cell. The prostaglandins made from arachidonic acid stored in the cell membrane, are probably the most well known group of these local hormones. Fatty acid catabolism A diagrammatic illustration of the process of lipolysis (in a fat cell) induced by high epinephrine and low insulin levels in the blood. Epinephrine binds to a beta-adrenergic receptor in the cell membrane of the adipocyte, which causes cAMP to be generated inside Continue reading >>
We Really Can Make Glucose From Fatty Acids After All! O Textbook, How Thy Biochemistry Hast Deceived Me!
Biochemistry textbooks generally tell us that we can’t turn fatty acids into glucose. For example, on page 634 of the 2006 and 2008 editions of Biochemistry by Berg, Tymoczko, and Stryer, we find the following: Animals Cannot Convert Fatty Acids to Glucose It is important to note that animals are unable to effect the net synthesis of glucose from fatty acids. Specficially, acetyl CoA cannot be converted into pyruvate or oxaloacetate in animals. In fact this is so important that it should be written in italics and have its own bold heading! But it’s not quite right. Making glucose from fatty acids is low-paying work. It’s not the type of alchemy that would allow us to build imperial palaces out of sugar cubes or offer hourly sweet sacrifices upon the altar of the glorious god of glucose (God forbid!). But it can be done, and it’ll help pay the bills when times are tight. All Aboard the Acetyl CoA! When we’re running primarily on fatty acids, our livers break the bulk of these fatty acids down into two-carbon units called acetate. When acetate hangs out all by its lonesome like it does in a bottle of vinegar, it’s called acetic acid and it gives vinegar its characteristic smell. Our livers aren’t bottles of vinegar, however, and they do things a bit differently. They have a little shuttle called coenzyme A, or “CoA” for short, that carries acetate wherever it needs to go. When the acetate passenger is loaded onto the CoA shuttle, we refer to the whole shebang as acetyl CoA. As acetyl CoA moves its caboose along the biochemical railway, it eventually reaches a crossroads where it has to decide whether to enter the Land of Ketogenesis or traverse the TCA cycle. The Land of Ketogenesis is a quite magical place to which we’ll return in a few moments, but n Continue reading >>
- International Textbook of Diabetes Mellitus, 4th Ed., Excerpt #82: Insulin Actions In Vivo: Glucose Metabolism Part 9 of 9
- World's first diabetes app will be able to check glucose levels without drawing a drop of blood and will be able to reveal what a can of coke REALLY does to sugar levels
- International Textbook of Diabetes Mellitus, 4th Ed., Excerpt #59: Mechanisms of insulin signal transduction Part 3 of 8
Fatty Acid Synthesis
Fatty acid synthesis is the creation of fatty acids from acetyl-CoA and NADPH through the action of enzymes called fatty acid synthases. This process takes place in the cytoplasm of the cell. Most of the acetyl-CoA which is converted into fatty acids is derived from carbohydrates via the glycolytic pathway. The glycolytic pathway also provides the glycerol with which three fatty acids can combine (by means of ester bonds) to form triglycerides (also known as "triacylglycerols", to distinguish them from fatty "acids" - or simply as "fat"), the final product of the lipogenic process. When only two fatty acids combine with glycerol and the third alcohol group is phosphorylated with a group such as phosphatidylcholine, a phospholipid is formed. Phospholipids form the bulk of the lipid bilayers that make up cell membranes and surround the organelles within the cells (e.g. the cell nucleus, mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus etc.) Straight-chain fatty acids Straight-chain fatty acids occur in two types: saturated and unsaturated. Saturated straight-chain fatty acids Synthesis of saturated fatty acids via Fatty Acid Synthase II in E. coli Much like β-oxidation, straight-chain fatty acid synthesis occurs via the six recurring reactions shown below, until the 16-carbon palmitic acid is produced. The diagrams presented show how fatty acids are synthesized in microorganisms and list the enzymes found in Escherichia coli. These reactions are performed by fatty acid synthase II (FASII), which in general contain multiple enzymes that act as one complex. FASII is present in prokaryotes, plants, fungi, and parasites, as well as in mitochondria. In animals, as well as some fungi such as yeast, these same reactions occur on fatty acid synthase I Continue reading >>
How The Body Uses Carbohydrates, Proteins, And Fats
How the Body Uses Carbohydrates, Proteins, and Fats The human body is remarkably adept at making do with whatever type of food is available. Our ability to survive on a variety of diets has been a vital adaptation for a species that evolved under conditions where food sources were scarce and unpredictable. Imagine if you had to depend on successfully hunting a woolly mammoth or stumbling upon a berry bush for sustenance! Today, calories are mostly cheap and plentifulperhaps too much so. Understanding what the basic macronutrients have to offer can help us make better choices when it comes to our own diets. From the moment a bite of food enters the mouth, each morsel of nutrition within starts to be broken down for use by the body. So begins the process of metabolism, the series of chemical reactions that transform food into components that can be used for the body's basic processes. Proteins, carbohydrates , and fats move along intersecting sets of metabolic pathways that are unique to each major nutrient. Fundamentallyif all three nutrients are abundant in the dietcarbohydrates and fats will be used primarily for energy while proteins provide the raw materials for making hormones, muscle, and other essential biological equipment. Proteins in food are broken down into pieces (called amino acids) that are then used to build new proteins with specific functions, such as catalyzing chemical reactions, facilitating communication between different cells, or transporting biological molecules from here to there. When there is a shortage of fats or carbohydrates, proteins can also yield energy. Fats typically provide more than half of the body's energy needs. Fat from food is broken down into fatty acids, which can travel in the blood and be captured by hungry cells. Fatty aci Continue reading >>
Ch. 7 Nutrition
Sort a 30. Your roommate Demetrius is participating in a weightlifting course and complains of a burning pain during workouts. You explain to Demetrius that the rapid breakdown of glucose in his muscles produces large amounts of pyruvate, which leads to a fall in pH within the muscle and that the muscle responds by converting excess pyruvate to a. lactate. b. glycerol. c. acetyl CoA. d. amino acids. b 61. Which of the following accounts for the higher energy density of a fatty acid compared with the other energy-yielding nutrients? a. Fatty acids have a lower percentage of hydrogen-carbon bonds b. Fatty acids have a greater percentage of hydrogen-carbon bonds c. Other energy-yielding nutrients have a lower percentage of oxygen-carbon bonds d. Other energy-yielding nutrients undergo fewer metabolic reactions, thereby lowering the energy yield c 66. Which of the following is the most likely explanation for the body's higher metabolic efficiency of converting a molecule of corn oil into stored fat compared with a molecule of sucrose? a. The enzymes specific for metabolizing absorbed fat have been found to have higher activities than those metabolizing sucrose b. The absorbed corn oil is transported to fat cells at a faster rate than the absorbed sucrose, thereby favoring the uptake of corn oil fat c. There are fewer metabolic reactions for disassembling the corn oil and re-assembling the parts into a triglyceride for uptake by the fat cells d. Because corn oil has a greater energy content than sucrose, conversion of these nutrients into stored fat requires a smaller percentage of the energy from the corn oil a 69. Which of the following is a characteristic of the metabolism of specific macronutrients? a. The rate of fat oxidation does not change when fat is eaten in excess Continue reading >>
Chapter 19 : Carbohydrate Biosynthesis
Thus the synthesis of glucose from pyruvate is a relativelycostly process. Much of this high energy cost is necessary toensure that gluconeogenesis is irreversible. Under intracellularconditions, the overall free-energy change of glycolysis is atleast -63 kJ/mol. Under the same conditions the overallfree-energy change of gluconeogenesis from pyruvate is alsohighly negative. Thus glycolysis and gluconeogenesis are bothessentially irreversible processes under intracellularconditions. Citric Acid Cycle Intermediates and Many Amino Acids AreGlucogenic The biosynthetic pathway to glucose described above allows thenet synthesis of glucose not only from pyruvate but also from thecitric acid cycle intermediates citrate, isocitrate,-ketoglutarate, succinate, fumarate, and malate. All may undergooxidation in the citric acid cycle to yield oxaloacetate.However, only three carbon atoms of oxaloacetate are convertedinto glucose; the fourth is released as CO in the conversion ofoxaloacetate to phosphoenolpyruvate by PEP carboxykinase (Fig.19-3). In Chapter 17 we showed that some or all of thecarbon atoms of many of the amino acids derived from proteins areultimately converted by mammals into either pyruvate or certainintermediates of the citric acid cycle. Such amino acids cantherefore undergo net conversion into glucose and are calledglucogenic amino acids (Table 19-3). Alanine and glutamine makeespecially important contributions in that they are the principalmolecules used to transport amino groups from extrahepatictissues to the liver. After removal of their amino groups inliver mitochondria, the carbon skeletons remaining (pyruvate anda-ketoglutarate, respectively) are readily funneled intogluconeogenesis. In contrast, there is no net conversion of even-carbon fattyacids into gl Continue reading >>
The Catabolism Of Fats And Proteins For Energy
The Catabolism of Fats and Proteins for Energy Before we get into anything, what does the word catabolism mean? When we went over catabolic and anabolic reactions , we said that catabolic reactions are the ones that break apart molecules. To remember what catabolic means, think of a CATastrophe where things are falling apart and breaking apart. You could also remember cats that tear apart your furniture. In order to make ATP for energy, the body breaks down mostly carbs, some fats and very small amounts of protein. Carbs are the go-to food, the favorite food that cells use to make ATP but now were going to see how our cells use fats and proteins for energy. What were going to find is that they are ALL going to be turned into sugars (acetyl) as this picture below shows. First lets do a quick review of things you already know because it is assumed you learned cell respiration already and how glucose levels are regulated in your blood ! Glucose can be stored as glycogen through a process known as glycogenesis. The hormone that promotes this process is insulin. Then when glycogen needs to be broken down, the hormone glucagon, promotes glycogenolysis (Glycogen-o-lysis) to break apart the glycogen and increase the blood sugar level. Glucose breaks down to form phosphoglycerate (PGAL) and then pyruvic acid. What do we call this process of splitting glucose into two pyruvic sugars? Thats glycolysis (glyco=glucose, and -lysis is to break down). When theres not enough oxygen, pyruvic acid is converted into lactic acid. When oxygen becomes available, lactic acid is converted back to pyruvic acid. Remember that this all occurs in the cytoplasm. The pyruvates are then, aerobically, broken apart in the mitochondria into Acetyl-CoA. The acetyl sugars are put into the Krebs citric aci Continue reading >>
Does Fat Convert To Glucose In The Body?
Your body is an amazing machine that is able to extract energy from just about anything you eat. While glucose is your body's preferred energy source, you can't convert fat into glucose for energy; instead, fatty acids or ketones are used to supply your body with energy from fat. Video of the Day Fat is a concentrated source of energy, and it generally supplies about half the energy you burn daily. During digestion and metabolism, the fat in the food you eat is broken down into fatty acids and glycerol, which are emulsified and absorbed into your blood stream. While some tissues -- including your muscles -- can use fatty acids for energy, your brain can't convert fatty acids to fuel. If you eat more fat than your body needs, the extra is stored in fat cells for later use. Fat has more than twice as many calories per gram as carbs and protein, which makes it an efficient form of stored energy. It would take more than 20 pounds of glycogen -- a type of carbohydrate used for fuel -- to store the same amount of energy in just 10 pounds of fat. Your Body Makes Glucose From Carbs Almost all the glucose in your body originated from carbohydrates, which come from the fruit, vegetables, grains and milk in your diet. When you eat these carb-containing foods, your digestive system breaks them down into glucose, which is then used for energy by your cells. Any excess glucose is converted into glycogen, then stored in your muscles and liver for later use. Once you can't store any more glucose or glycogen, your body stores any leftover carbs as fat. Glucose is your brain's preferred source of energy. However, when glucose is in short supply, your brain can use ketones -- which are derived from fat -- for fuel. Since your brain accounts for approximately one-fifth of your daily calori Continue reading >>
Why Can't Fat Produce Glucose?
Tousief Irshad Ahmed Sirwal Author has 77 answers and 106.2k answer views Acetyl CoA is NOT a substrate for gluconeogenesis in animals 1. Pyruvate dehydrogenase reaction is irreversible. So, acetyl CoA cannot be converted back to pyruvate. 2. 2C Acetyl CoA enters the TCA cycle by condensing with 4C oxaloacetate. 2 molecules of CO2 are released & the oxaloacetate is regenerated. There is no NET production of oxaloacetate. Animals cannot convert fat into glucose with minimal exceptions 1. Propionyl CoA derived from odd chain fatty acids are converted to Succinyl CoA Glucogenic 2. Glycerol derived from triglycerides are glucogenic. Answered Mar 26, 2017 Author has 942 answers and 259.1k answer views Yijia Xiong pointed out that the glycerol portion of triglycerides (fats) can indeed be converted to glucose. It is not so energy-inefficient that it is avoided by our bodies. If nutritionally, we are in a gluconeogenesis mode (building up glucose stores rather than consuming them), glycerol would be a perfectly acceptable precursor. However, I think the original question had more to do with the vast bulk of the triglycerides that are not glycerol, but are fatty acids. And it is true that we cant produce glucose from fatty acids. The reason is that the catabolic reactions of fatty acids break off two carbon atoms at a time as Acetyl-CoA. But our metabolic suite of pathways has no way to convert a two-carbon fragment to glucose. The end product of glycolysis is pyruvate, a three-carbon compound. Pyruvate can be back-synthesized into glucose. But the committing reaction for the Krebs cycle is the pyruvate dehydrogenase step, forming acetyl-CoA. That reaction is not reversible. Once pyruvate loses a carbon atom, it cant go back. The three main macronutrients are carbohydrates, pr Continue reading >>
164 24.3 Lipid Metabolism
Learning Objectives By the end of this section, you will be able to: Explain how energy can be derived from fat Explain the purpose and process of ketogenesis Describe the process of ketone body oxidation Explain the purpose and the process of lipogenesis Fats (or triglycerides) within the body are ingested as food or synthesized by adipocytes or hepatocytes from carbohydrate precursors (Figure 1). Lipid metabolism entails the oxidation of fatty acids to either generate energy or synthesize new lipids from smaller constituent molecules. Lipid metabolism is associated with carbohydrate metabolism, as products of glucose (such as acetyl CoA) can be converted into lipids. Lipid metabolism begins in the intestine where ingested triglycerides are broken down into smaller chain fatty acids and subsequently into monoglyceride molecules (see Figure 1b) by pancreatic lipases, enzymes that break down fats after they are emulsified by bile salts. When food reaches the small intestine in the form of chyme, a digestive hormone called cholecystokinin (CCK) is released by intestinal cells in the intestinal mucosa. CCK stimulates the release of pancreatic lipase from the pancreas and stimulates the contraction of the gallbladder to release stored bile salts into the intestine. CCK also travels to the brain, where it can act as a hunger suppressant. Together, the pancreatic lipases and bile salts break down triglycerides into free fatty acids. These fatty acids can be transported across the intestinal membrane. However, once they cross the membrane, they are recombined to again form triglyceride molecules. Within the intestinal cells, these triglycerides are packaged along with cholesterol molecules in phospholipid vesicles called chylomicrons (Figure 2). The chylomicrons enable fats an Continue reading >>
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Can Sugars Be Produced From Fatty Acids? A Test Case For Pathway Analysis Tools
Can sugars be produced from fatty acids? A test case for pathway analysis tools Department of Bioinformatics, 2Bio Systems Analysis Group, Friedrich-Schiller-Universitt Jena, Ernst-Abbe-Platz 2, 07743 Jena, Germany and 3School of Life Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Headington, Oxford, OX3 0BP, UK *To whom correspondence should be addressed. Search for other works by this author on: Department of Bioinformatics, 2Bio Systems Analysis Group, Friedrich-Schiller-Universitt Jena, Ernst-Abbe-Platz 2, 07743 Jena, Germany and 3School of Life Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Headington, Oxford, OX3 0BP, UK *To whom correspondence should be addressed. Search for other works by this author on: Department of Bioinformatics, 2Bio Systems Analysis Group, Friedrich-Schiller-Universitt Jena, Ernst-Abbe-Platz 2, 07743 Jena, Germany and 3School of Life Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Headington, Oxford, OX3 0BP, UK Search for other works by this author on: Department of Bioinformatics, 2Bio Systems Analysis Group, Friedrich-Schiller-Universitt Jena, Ernst-Abbe-Platz 2, 07743 Jena, Germany and 3School of Life Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Headington, Oxford, OX3 0BP, UK Search for other works by this author on: Bioinformatics, Volume 25, Issue 1, 1 January 2009, Pages 152158, Luis F. de Figueiredo, Stefan Schuster, Christoph Kaleta, David A. Fell; Can sugars be produced from fatty acids? A test case for pathway analysis tools, Bioinformatics, Volume 25, Issue 1, 1 January 2009, Pages 152158, Motivation: In recent years, several methods have been proposed for determining metabolic pathways in an automated way based on network topology. The aim of this work is to analyse these methods by tackling a concrete example relevant in biochemistry. It concerns the question wh Continue reading >>
The Catabolism Of Fats And Proteins For Energy
Before we get into anything, what does the word catabolism mean? When we went over catabolic and anabolic reactions, we said that catabolic reactions are the ones that break apart molecules. To remember what catabolic means, think of a CATastrophe where things are falling apart and breaking apart. You could also remember cats that tear apart your furniture. In order to make ATP for energy, the body breaks down mostly carbs, some fats and very small amounts of protein. Carbs are the go-to food, the favorite food that cells use to make ATP but now we’re going to see how our cells use fats and proteins for energy. What we’re going to find is that they are ALL going to be turned into sugars (acetyl) as this picture below shows. First let’s do a quick review of things you already know because it is assumed you learned cell respiration already and how glucose levels are regulated in your blood! Glucose can be stored as glycogen through a process known as glycogenesis. The hormone that promotes this process is insulin. Then when glycogen needs to be broken down, the hormone glucagon, promotes glycogenolysis (Glycogen-o-lysis) to break apart the glycogen and increase the blood sugar level. Glucose breaks down to form phosphoglycerate (PGAL) and then pyruvic acid. What do we call this process of splitting glucose into two pyruvic sugars? That’s glycolysis (glyco=glucose, and -lysis is to break down). When there’s not enough oxygen, pyruvic acid is converted into lactic acid. When oxygen becomes available, lactic acid is converted back to pyruvic acid. Remember that this all occurs in the cytoplasm. The pyruvates are then, aerobically, broken apart in the mitochondria into Acetyl-CoA. The acetyl sugars are put into the Krebs citric acid cycle and they are totally broken Continue reading >>
Sort What is the difference between energy and metabolism? Energy metabolism? Energy is the capacity to do work - heat, mechanical, electrical, CHEMICAL Metabolism is how the body uses food to meet its needs - specifically, it is the sum total of all chemical reactions in the living cells of the body - energy metabolism includes all reactions by which the body obtains and expends the energy from food What are the two types of metabolic reactions in the body? Anabolic/Anabolism - building body compounds (requires energy) - ex. glucose + glucose = glycogen - ex. glycerol + fatty acid = triglycerides - ex. amino acid + amino acid = protein Catabolic/Catabolism - breaking down body compounds (releases energy) - ex. glycogen -> glucose - ex. triglycerides -> glycerol + fatty acid - ex. protein -> amino acids What is ATP? How is it formed? (adenosine triphosphate) It is a molecule made up of three phosphate groups that has high energy bonds (so it provides lots of energy when it is broken down) - it is what provides energy for any reaction or cell activity in the body It is formed from the breakdown of glucose (glycolysis), fatty acids, and amino acids Its negative charge makes it vulnerable to hydrolysis What is the idea of coupled reactions? The body makes ATP in coupled reactions. Energy (ATP) is needed to facilitate the reactions that make more ATP. So the body uses ATP to make ATP 1.) ATP is broken down, which provides energy for a variety of functions in the body - when ATP is broken down, it loses a phosphate group and becomes ADP 2.) Energy is required to add a phosphate group to ADP to make ATP (uses ATP from food to do this) This system is about 50% efficient, and the rest is lost as heat How does digestion break things down into smaller units? Carbs -> glucose (and Continue reading >>
Multiple Choice Quiz 1
(See related pages) 1 Which one of the following would not be a nutrient? 2 Most vitamins, minerals, and water all have this in common: 3 When the body metabolizes nutrients for energy, fats yield about _______ times the energy as carbohydrates or proteins. 4 A calorie is the amount of energy necessary to raise the temperature of one gram of _________ one degree __________. 5 One piece of apple pie would yield about 6 The disaccharide that most people think of as table sugar is 7 When lactose is digested, it yields two monosaccharides called 8 The complex carbohydrate (polysaccharide) that is digested to the monosaccharide, glucose, and is found in vegetables, fruits, and grains and is called 9 If excess glucose is present in the body, the glucose first will be stored as __________ in muscle and the liver. 10 Triglycerides that contain one or more double covalent bonds between carbon atoms of their fatty acids are called 11 Bubbling hydrogen gas through polyunsaturated vegetable oil will cause the oil to become more 12 The lipid that is a component of the plasma membrane and can be used to form bile salts and steroid hormones is 13 The American Heart Association recommends that saturated fats should contribute no more than 10% of total fat intake. Excess fats, especially cholesterol and saturated fat, can increase the risk of 16 The daily-recommended consumption amount of protein for a healthy adult is about _____% of total kilocalorie intake per day. 20 Inorganic nutrients that are necessary for normal metabolism are called 23 When a molecule loses an electron, that molecule is said to be ___________ and often a(n) _____________ ion is lost along with the electron. 25 When a hydrogen ion and an associated electron are lost from a nutrient molecule, which of the followi Continue reading >>
Evolving Health: Why Can't We Convert Fat To Glucose?
As evident by many sugar-laden soda pop "potbellies" of North America, lipogenesis can obviously occur from drinking and eating too much sugar (1). Wouldnt it be just grand to reverse the process and be able to lose all that fat via gluconeogenesis? Unfortunately mammals do not have the ability to synthesize glucose from fats (1). The fact is that once glucose is converted to acetyl coA there is no method of getting back to glucose. The pyruvate dehydrogenase reaction that converts pyruvate to acetyl CoA is not reversible (1p252). Because lipid metabolism produces acetyl CoA via beta-oxidation, there can be no conversion to pyruvate or oxaloacetate that may have been used for gluconeogenesis (1p252). Further, the two carbons in the acetyl CoA molecule are lost upon entering the citric acid cycle (1p252). Thus, the acetyl CoA is used for energy (1p252). There are some fatty acids that have an odd number of carbon atoms that can be converted to glucose, but these are not common in the diet (1p253). Maybe they should be made more common. Do they taste good? 1. Gropper SS, Smith JL, Groff JL. Advanced Nutrition and Human Metabolism. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth, 2009. Continue reading >>