Chapter 8

Amino Acids and Nitrogen Compounds

The body relies on the regular intake of large amounts of amino acids, which are mostly chained together in peptides and proteins. Many of the different amino acids in foods can be converted into other amino acids. A few others, the essential amino acids, have to be consumed in sufficient amounts because they cannot be produced from other amino acids.

A large number of transporters mediate the absorption of amino acids from digested food. An extensive network of metabolic pathways operates on the newly absorbed amino acids starting in the enterocytes of the small intestine and continuing throughout the body after a first pass through the liver. Amino acids serve as the starting material for many thousands ...

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