Important Functions of Glutamine

Gastrointestinal system Energy source for enterocytes maintains mucosal integrity and barrier

Immune system

Nervous system Hepatobiliary system

Renal system function of the gut Provides building blocks of DNA and RNA for rapidly dividing cells; energy source for macrophages, lymphocytes, and neutrophils; precursor to glutathione, a powerful antioxidant Acts as a neurotransmitter

Transports ammonia from peripheral tissue to liver for conversion into urea; important for pancreatic growth and function Metabolized in the kidney to regulate acid-base homeostasis; substrate for gluconeogenesis in kidney

FIGURE 5.1 Molecular structure of glutamine.

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