Glutamine and glutamate metabolism across the liver sinusoid

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77 Scopus citations


The liver shows net glutamine uptake after a protein-containing meal, during uncontrolled diabetes, sepsis and short-term starvation, but changes to net release during long-term starvation and metabolic acidosis. Some studies report a small net release of glutamate by the liver. The differential expression of glutamine synthetase (perivenous) and glutaminase (periportal) within the liver indicates that glutamine is used for urea synthesis in periportal cells, whereas glutamine synthesis serves to detoxify any residual ammonia in perivenous cells. Experiments in vivo suggest that changes in net hepatic glutamine balance are due predominantly to regulation of glutaminase activity, with the flux through glutamine synthetase being relatively constant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)983S-987S
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number4 SUPPL.
StatePublished - 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


  • Ammonia
  • Glutamate
  • Glutaminase
  • Glutamine
  • Glutamine synthetase
  • Liver
  • Urea cycle


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