Increased dietary branched-chain amino acids do not improve growth in developing rats with chronic biliary obstruction

S. A. Weisdorf, N. Hamel, M. E. Pierpont, L. D. Bowers, F. B. Cerra

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4 Scopus citations


We studied dietary branched-chain amino acid enrichment in cholestatic weanling rats. Growth was assessed with body weight, muscle weight and nitrogen balance. Systemic metabolic measurements that reflect liver function were evaluated, including plasma ammonia, albumin, amino acids, glucose, triglyceride and branched-chain ketoacids, as well as urinary carnitine excretion. Twenty-two rats underwent bile-duct ligation at 14 d of age. At weaning, 11 rats were fed a control diet and 11 an isoenergetic, isonitrogenous branched-chain amino acid-enriched diet for 3 wk, each with a sham-operated, pair-fed control. Body weights were similar in all four groups. Changes due to bile-duct ligation and not affected by the diet manipulation included lower plasma glucose, nitrogen balance and muscle weight, and higher triglyceride concentration, carnitine excretion and liver weight. Changes due to ligation that were normalized by dietary manipulation included plasma albumin, ammonia and total amino acid concentrations. The ratio of branched-chain to aromatic amino acids was decreased in ligated animals fed both diets; however, branched-chain amino acids were lower in the two groups fed more branched-chain amino acids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1447-1453
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Amino acids
  • Branched-chain amino acids
  • Carnitine
  • Cholestasis
  • Rats


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