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JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 1995 Sep-Oct;19(5):381-6.

Structured triglycerides were well tolerated and induced increased whole body fat oxidation compared with long-chain triglycerides in postoperative patients.

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Department of Surgery, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, University of Göteborg, Sweden.



It has been proposed, on the basis of animal experiments, that medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) may exert more favorable effects on whole body metabolism of injured animals than long-chain triglycerides (LCT). Therefore, the present study was designed to evaluate whether structured triglycerides are associated with increased whole body fat oxidation without promotion of ketogenesis in postoperative patients.


A structured lipid emulsion (73403 Pharmacia, Sweden) containing medium- and long-chain fatty acids, esterified randomly to glycerol in a triglyceride structure, was used. Whole body fat oxidation was determined by indirect calorimetry in the postoperative period. Patients were randomized to receive structured lipids 1 day followed by LCT (Intralipid, Pharmacia) the next day or vice versa during 6 postoperative days. In part 1 of the study patients received fat at 1.0 g/kg per day in the presence of 80% of the basal requirement of nonprotein calories. In part 2 patients received fat at 1.5 g/kg per day in the presence of 120% of the nonprotein caloric requirement. Amino acids were always provided at 0.15 g N/kg per day.


Structured lipids were not associated with any side effects, were rapidly cleared from the plasma compartment, and were rapidly oxidized without any significant hyperlipidemia or ketosis. Provision of structured lipids in the presence of excess of nonprotein calories (part 2) caused a significantly higher whole body fat oxidation (2.4 +/- 0.05 g/kg per day) compared with LCT provision (1.9 +/- 0.06 g/kg per day) (p < .0001) examined in the same patients.


The results demonstrated for the first time in man that provision of structured triglycerides were associated with increased whole body fat oxidation in stressed postoperative patients, which is in line with the original metabolic and biochemical concept for structured triglycerides. The study provided evidence to support that structured lipids may represent a next generation of IV fat emulsions that may be clinically advantageous compared with conventional LCT emulsions in certain clinical conditions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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