Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Carnitine deficiency

Contributor(s): Mark Oyama, Jill Sammarco

Introduction

  • The primary source of energy for cardiac function is obtained through metabolism of free fatty acids.
  • Carnitine L-carnitine (l-ß-hydroxy-g-trimethylammonium butyrate) is crucial to the transport of fatty acids into the mitochondria and supply to the ß-oxidation cycle. Because of its role in energy production, deficiencies in carnitine can result in decreased myocardial energy stores and myocardial dysfunction.
  • The role of carnitine in dogs with cardiac disease, namely dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM Heart: dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) ) is still not entirely understood, nevertheless, myocardial carnitine deficiency may be an important clinical entity.

Role of carnitine in fatty acid transport

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Previous studies of carnitine and heart disease

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Clinical diagnosis of carnitine deficiency

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Carnitine supplementation

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Summary

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Sanderson S L, Gross K L, Ogburn P N et al (2001) Effects of dietary fat and L-carnitine on plasma and whole blood taurine concentrations and cardiac function in healthy dogs fed protein-restricted diets. Am J Vet Res 62 (10), 1616-23 PubMed.
  • Kittleson M D, Keene B, Pion P D et al (1997) Results of the multicenter spaniel trial (MUST): taurine- and carnitine-responsive dilated cardiomyopathy in American cocker spaniels with decreased plasma taurine concentration. J Vet Intern Med 11 (4), 204 PubMed.
  • Costa N D, Labuc R H (1994) Case report: efficacy of oral carnitine therapy for dilated cardiomyopathy in boxer dogs. J Nutr 124 (12 Suppl), 2687S-2692S PubMed.
  • Keene B W, Panciera D P, Atkins C E et al (1991) Myocardial L-carnitine deficiency in a family of dogs with dilated cardiomyopathy. JAVMA 198 (4), 647-50 PubMed.
  • Keene B W (1991) L-carnitine supplementation in the therapy of canine dilated cardiomyopathy. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 21 (5), 1005-9 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Pion et al (1999) Nutrition and management of cardiovascular disease. In: Fox P R ed. Textbook of Canine and Feline Cardiology. W B Saunders, Philadelphia, PA pp 739.


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