Effects of L-Carnitine on Tissue Levels of Free Fatty Acid, Acyl CoA, and Acylcarnitine in Ischemic Heart

  • Y. Suzuki
  • T. Kamikawa
  • A. Kobayashi
  • N. Yamazaki


In order to evaluate the protective effects of L-carnitine on ischemic myocardium, its effects on tissue levels of free fatty acid (FFA), acyl CoA, acyl carnitine, and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) were studied in ischemic dog hearts. Myocardial ischemia was induced by the ligation of left anterior descending coronary artery for 15 min. L-Carnitine (100 mg/kg) was administered intravenously prior to coronary ligation. In ischemic myocardium, tissue levels of free carnitine and ATP decreased, whereas long-chain acyl carnitine, long-chain acyl CoA, and FFA increased. Pretreatment of L-carnitine prevented the decrease in free carnitine and ATP and the increase in long-chain acyl carnitine and long-chain acyl CoA. A positive correlation was observed between ATP and free carnitine. On the other hand, a negative correlation was observed not only between ATP and the ratio of long-chain acyl CoA to free carnitine but also between ATP and the ratio of long-chain acyl carnitine to free carnitine. These results suggest that L-carnitine has protective effects on ischemic myocardium, probably by preventing the accumulation of long-chain acyl carnitine and long chain acyl CoA.


Free Fatty Acid Ischemic Myocardium Ischemic Area Free Carnitine Total Carnitine 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Itaya, K., and Ui, M. 1965. Colorimetric determination of free fatty acids in biological fluids. J. Lipid Res. 6:16–20.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Lamprecht, W., and Trautschold, I. 1975. Adenosine-5’-triphosphate: Determination with hexokinase and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. Methods Enzymat. Anal. 4:2101–2105.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Liedtke, A. J., and Nellis, S. H. 1979. Effects of carnitine in ischemic and fatty acid supplemented swine hearts. J. Clin. Invest. 64:440–447.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Liedtke, A. J., Nellis, S., and Neely, J. R. 1978. Effects of excess free fatty acids on mechanical and metabolic function in normal and ischemic myocardium in swine. Circ. Res. 43:652–661.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Marquis, N. R., and Fritz, I.B. 1964. Enzymological determination of free carnitine concentrations in rat tissues. J. Lipid Res. 5:184–187.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Neely, J. R., Rovetto, M. J., and Whitmer, J. T. 1976. Rate-limiting steps of carbohydrate and fatty acid metabolism in ischemic hearts. Acta Med. Scand [Suppl.] 587:9–15.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Opie, L. H. 1979. Role of carnitine in fatty acid metabolism of normal and ischemic myocardium. Am. Heart J. 97:375–388.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Oram, J. F., Bennetch, S. L., and Neely, J. R. 1973. Regulation of fatty acid utilization in isolated perfused rat hearts. J. Biol. Chem. 248:5299–5309.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Pande, S. V. 1975. A mitochondrial carnitine acylcarnitine translocase system. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 72:883–887.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Pearson, D. J., Chase, J. F. A., and Tubbs, P. K. 1969. The assay of (-)-carnitine and its o-acyl derivatives. Methods Enzymol. 14:612–622.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Pitts, B. J. R., Tate, C. A., Von Winkle, W. B., Wood, J. M., and Entman, M. L. 1978. Palmitylcarnitine inhibition of calcium pump in sarcoplasmic reticulum: A possible role in myocardial ischemia. Life Sci. 23:391–402.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Shrago, E., Shug, A. L., Sul, H., Bittar, N., and Folts, J. D. 1976. Control of energy production in myocardial ischemia. Circ. Res. 38(Suppl. l):75–79.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Shug, A. L., Shrago, E., Bittar, N., Folts, J. D., and Koke, J. R. 1975. Acyl-CoA inhibition of adenine nucleotide translocation in ischemic myocardium. Am. J. Physiol. 228:689–692.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Suzuki, Y., Kamikawa, T., and Yamazaki, N. 1980. Protective effects of L-carnitine on ischemic heart. In: R. A. Frenkel and J. D. McGarry (eds.), Carnitine Biosynthesis, Metabolism, and Functions, pp. 341–352. Academic Press, New York.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Veloso, D., and Veech, R. L. 1974. Stoichiometric hydrolysis of long chain acyl-CoA and measurement of the CoA formed with an enzymatic cycling method. Anal. Biochem. 62:449–450.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Williamson, J. R., and Corkey, B. E. 1969. Assays of intermediates of the citric acid cycle and related compounds by fluometric enzyme methods. Methods Enzymol. 13:437–440.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Wood, J. M., Bush, B., Pitts, B. J. R., and Schwartz, A. 1977. Inhibition of bovine heart Na+, K +-ATPase by palmitylcarnitine and palmityl-CoA. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 74:677–684.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Y. Suzuki
    • 1
  • T. Kamikawa
    • 1
  • A. Kobayashi
    • 1
  • N. Yamazaki
    • 1
  1. 1.Third Department of Internal MedicineHamamatsu University School of MedicineHamamatsuJapan

Personalised recommendations