Ketone bodies

The water-soluble molecules, acetoacetic acid, beta-hydroxybutyric acid and acetone, that are produced during the metabolic state of ketosis.

Ketone bodies are considered an important source of energy for the brain and heart during fasting or strenuous exercise. They are converted into acetyl-CoA which then enter the Kreb cycle (citric acid cycle) to produce ATP. The brain also converts acetyl-CoA into long chain fatty acids.

Acetoacetic acid, and beta-hydroxybutyric acid are produced from fatty acids and the deamination of ketogenic amino acids. Acetone is a degradation breakdown product of acetoacetic acid.

Surplus ketone bodies are excreted via the kidneys.

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