Features, causes and consequences of splanchnic sequestration of amino acid in old rats. Academic Article uri icon


  • RATIONALE: In elderly subjects, splanchnic extraction of amino acids (AA) increases during meals in a process known as splanchnic sequestration of amino acids (SSAA). This process potentially contributes to the age-related progressive decline in muscle mass via reduced peripheral availability of dietary AA. SSAA mechanisms are unknown but may involve an increased net utilization of ingested AA in the splanchnic area. OBJECTIVES: Using stable isotope methodology in fed adult and old rats to provide insight into age-related SSAA using three hypotheses: 1) an increase in protein synthesis in the gut and/or the liver, 2) an increase in AA oxidation related to an increased ureagenesis, and 3) Kupffer cell (KC) activation consequently to age-related low-grade inflammation. FINDINGS: Splanchnic extraction of Leu (SPELeu) was doubled in old rats compared to adult rats and was not changed after KC inactivation. No age-related effects on gut and liver protein synthesis were observed, but urea synthesis was lower in old rats and negatively correlated to liver Arg utilization. Net whole-body protein synthesis and arterial AA levels were lower in old rats and correlated negatively with SPELeu. CONCLUSION: SSAA is not the consequence of age-related alterations in ureagenesis, gut or liver protein synthesis or of KC activity. However, SSAA may be related to reduced net whole-body protein synthesis and consequently to the reduced lean body mass that occurs during aging.

published proceedings

  • PLoS One

author list (cited authors)

  • Jourdan, M., Deutz, N., Cynober, L., & Aussel, C.

citation count

  • 19

complete list of authors

  • Jourdan, Marion||Deutz, Nicolaas EP||Cynober, Luc||Aussel, Christian

editor list (cited editors)

  • Blanc, S.

publication date

  • November 2011