Glutamine provides nitrogen and carbon molecules for synthesis of macromolecules and production of energy.1,2 Glutamine is a direct respiratory fuel for enterocytes and mucosal epithelial cells of the small intestine. Glutamine is also utilized as an energy source by lymphocytes, macrophages, and replication cells of the stomach, large intestine, spleen, and pancreas. Plasma glutamine concentrations have been observed to decrease after exhaustive exercise, which has been attributed to increased utilization of glutamine in the liver for gluconeogenesis and urea formation and an increased rate of glutamine utilization by the kidneys and immune system.26,27
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