Definitions for ketone bodies
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Ketone bodies are three different water-soluble biochemicals that are produced as by-products when fatty acids are broken down for energy in the liver. Two of the three are used as a source of energy in the heart and brain while the third is a waste product excreted from the body. In the brain, they are a vital source of energy during fasting. Although termed "bodies", they are molecules, not particles. The three endogenous ketone bodies are acetone, acetoacetic acid, and beta-hydroxybutyric acid, although beta-hydroxybutyric acid is not technically a ketone but a carboxylic acid. Other ketone bodies such as beta-ketopentanoate and beta-hydroxypentanoate may be created as a result of the metabolism of synthetic triglycerides such as triheptanoin.
U.S. National Library of Medicine
The substances beta-hydroxybutyric acid, acetoacetic acid, and acetone, which are produced by fatty acid and carbohydrate metabolism in the liver in approximately a 78:20:2 ratio. Acetoacetate is produced from acetyl-CoA. Most is enzymatically converted to beta-ketobutyrate, but a small amount is spontaneously decarboxylated to acetone. The ketone bodies can be used as fuels by muscle and brain tissue. In starvation and uncontrolled diabetes mellitus, large quantities are produced, causing metabolic acidosis and elevated blood and urine levels of all three ketone bodies. (Dorland, 28th ed)
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