Glutamine metabolism in skeletal muscles from the broiler chick (Gallus domesticus) and the laboratory rat (Rattus norvegicus). Academic Article uri icon


  • Oxidative decarboxylation of L-[1-14C]glutamine was studied in isolated chick and rat skeletal muscles incubated in the presence of glucose, insulin and plasma concentrations of amino acids. (1) The rate of oxidative decarboxylation of L-[1-14C]glutamine was high, and exceeded that of L-[1-14C]leucine in all muscles. (2) The rate of oxidative decarboxylation of L-[1-14C]glutamine increased with increasing intracellular concentrations of glutamine. (3) The activities of glutamine aminotransferases K and L were more than 10-fold greater in rat than in chick skeletal muscles. (4) Mitochondrial phosphate-activated glutaminase activity was approx. 10-fold greater in chick than in rat skeletal muscles and increased with increasing glutamine concentrations. (5) An inhibitor of glutaminase, 6-diazo-5-oxo-L-norleucine, inhibited the rate of glutamine decarboxylation in chick, but not in rat, skeletal muscle. These findings suggest that glutamine degradation in skeletal muscle may be substantial and may make an important contribution to the regulation of intramuscular glutamine concentrations. A species difference in the pathways and the subcellular location for the conversion of glutamine into 2-oxoglutarate in rat and chick skeletal muscles is implied by the relative activities of glutamine-degrading enzymes.

published proceedings

  • Biochem J

author list (cited authors)

  • Wu, G. Y., Thompson, J. R., & Baracos, V. E.

citation count

  • 51

complete list of authors

  • Wu, GY||Thompson, JR||Baracos, VE

publication date

  • March 1991