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Pediatr Res. 1986 Feb;20(2):122-5.

Excretion of dicarboxylic and omega-1 hydroxy fatty acids by low birth weight infants fed with medium-chain triglycerides.


The effects of feeding a commercial formula containing increased amounts of medium-chain fatty acids on the urinary excretions of C6-C10 moncarboxylic, dicarboxylic, and omega-1 hydroxy acids were studied in 13 growing preterm infants of mean birth weight 1.42 kg in a randomized double-blind cross-over clinical trial. Infants were allocated to two sequential feeding regimes of 5 days each, during the last 3 days of which urine was collected and analysed by gas-chromatography mass spectrometry. The two feeding regimes consisted of high energy and protein-containing formulas specially designed for growing low birth weight infants. In one diet the triglyceride component consisted of 46% medium-chain (C8-C10) and 54% long-chain fatty acid residues: in the other it consisted of 4% medium-chain and 96% fatty acid residues. The infants were randomized so that six infants were fed first with the medium-chain predominant formula and seven were fed first with the long-chain predominant formula. There were significant differences in the urinary excretions of octanoate, sebacate, suberate, adipate, 7-hydroxyoctanoate, and 5-hydroxyhexanoate; these substances appearing in much greater quantities in the urine during the period in which medium-chain triglycerides were predominant in the formula. The significance of this organic aciduria, which accounted for 0.7% of the dietary intake of medium-chain triglycerides, remains to be established.

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