Ketone bodies
Chemicals that the body makes when there is not enough insulin in the blood and it must break down fat instead of the sugar glucose for energy. The ketone bodies — acetone, acetoacetate, and beta-hydroxybutyrate — are toxic acidic chemicals. They build up in the blood and then spill over into the urine. The body can also rid itself of acetone through the lungs. This gives the breath a fruity odor. The presence of ketone bodies in the blood is termed "ketosis" and in urine is called "ketonuria."

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three substances that are produced by fatty acid and carbohydrate metabolism in the liver, being β-hydroxybutyric acid, acetoacetic acid, and acetone in approximately a 78:20:2 ratio. Acetoacetate is produced from acetyl-CoA; most is enzymatically converted to β-ketobutyrate, but a small amount is spontaneously decarboxylated to acetone. The ketone bodies can be used as fuels by muscle and brain tissue. In starvation and uncontrolled diabetes mellitus, large quantities are produced, causing metabolic acidosis and elevated blood and urine levels of all three ketone bodies.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • ketone bodies — plural noun Biochemistry three related compounds produced during the metabolism of fats and synthesized in the liver during starvation for use as an alternative energy source to glucose …   English new terms dictionary

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  • ketone — A substance with the carbonyl group linking two carbon atoms; the most important in medicine and the simplest k. is dimethyl k. (acetone). * * * ke·tone kē .tōn n an organic compound (as acetone) with a carbonyl group attached to two carbon atoms …   Medical dictionary

  • ketone — n. any member of a group of organic compounds consisting of a carbonyl group (=CO) flanked by two alkyl groups. The ketones acetoacetic acid, acetone, and β hydroxybutyrate (known as ketone (or acetone) bodies) are produced during the metabolism… …   The new mediacal dictionary

  • acetone bodies — acetone bodies, Medicine. a group of ketones resulting from incomplete oxidation of fats, the presence of which in urine is a characteristic symptom of diabetes; ketone bodies …   Useful english dictionary

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