Gastric Lipolysis and Fatty Acid Utilization in Preterm Infants
Development of the newborn infant is greatly dependent upon the capability to utilize dietary fat. In human milk and infant formulas, fats provide 50% of the calories. Fat utilization is dependent upon 1) digestion of the dietary lipids by lipases present in the gastrointestinal tract, and 2) absorption of the hydrolyzed lipid products facilitated by bile salts (1). In the newborn, and especially in the premature infant, because of insufficient maturation, pancreatic lipase activity and bile salt levels are low (2). Consequently intragastric lipolysis by lingual and gastric (3) lipases may play an important role in fat digestion. This is especially critical for the premature or low-birth-weight infant.
KeywordsLipase Activity Gastric Aspirate Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency Pancreatic Lipase Activity Lingual Lipase
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