Biosynthesis of acetyl-l-carnityl choline
Review articleOpen access

AbstractEarlier work had shown that acetyl-1-carnityl CoA was the material with acetylcholine-like activity which accumulated in the brain of narcotized rats. Accordingly, it was of importance to determine what normal function this material could have in the body. It appeared likely to be involved in acetylcholine and/or acetyl-1-carnityl choline formation. Since both these products are choline esters and it has been shown that the enzyme choline acetyltransferase is nonspecific for the esterification of choline, we have used the acetyl-1-carnityl CoA from narcotized brain extracts to determine which of these two products is produced when this substance is reacted with an extract of rat brain acetone powder as source of enzyme and choline. It was found that acetyl-1-carnityl choline could have been the only product formed under the particular reaction conditions studied. Product formation was indicated by increased acetylcholine-like activity as determined by bioassay. Acetylcholine formation could not be demonstrated with the particular reaction studied. These results also provide further evidence that the material with acetylcholine-like activity present in brain extracts from narcotized rats was not acetylcholine.

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