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Comp Biochem Physiol B Biochem Mol Biol. 2007 Jun;147(2):278-87. Epub 2007 Jan 30.

Chicken liver and muscle carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1: nutritional regulation of messengers.

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Station de Recherches Avicoles, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, 37380 Nouzilly, France.


In mammals, carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1 (CPT1) is a rate limiting enzyme of fatty acid oxidation. Two isoforms are present. We characterized a full-length cDNA sequence encoding chicken liver L-CPT1 isoform and a partial cDNA sequence encoding chicken muscle M-CPT1 isoform. CPT1 messengers showed the expected tissue specificity. M-CPT1 messenger and CPT1 activity were higher in oxidative than in glycolytic muscle. Expression of both isoforms was assessed in various tissues of genetically fat or lean chickens. Fasting considerably increased L-CPT1 mRNA expression and beta-hydroxyacyl CoA dehydrogenase (HAD) activity in the liver of fat or lean chickens. Unexpectedly, fasting did not increase M-CPT1 mRNA levels nor HAD activity in muscles of either chicken genotype. It however increased succinyl-CoA:3-ketoacid CoA transferase (SCOT) mRNA expression (an enzyme related to ketone body utilization) in oxidative muscle. SCOT messenger was slightly more abundant in oxidative muscle of lean chickens but not in glycolytic muscle. In conclusion, the regulation of fatty acid oxidation is probably not impaired in fat chicken. The absence of fasting stimulation of M-CPT1 mRNA expression, which is at variance with the situation observed in mammals, suggests that during fasting, chicken muscles preferentially use ketone bodies as fuel, at least in the short term.

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