Proceedings of the Japan Academy, Series B
Online ISSN : 1349-2896
Print ISSN : 0386-2208
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The biological significance of ω-oxidation of fatty acids
Yoshiro MIURA
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2013 Volume 89 Issue 8 Pages 370-382

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Abstract

The author focuses on the biological significance of ω-oxidation of fatty acids. Early studies revealed that there is a subsidiary pathway for β-oxidation of fatty acids when β-oxidation is blocked. Many studies demonstrated that the ω-oxidation serves to provide succinyl-CoA for the citric acid cycle and for gluconeogenesis under conditions of starvation and diabetes. Acylglucosylceramides which are composed of linoleic acid, long chain ω-hydroxy fatty acids, eicosasphingenine (or trihydroxyeicosasphingenine) and glucose, are responsible for normal epidermal permeability function in the skin. It is observed that ω- and (ω-1)-oxidation of fatty acids are related to energy metabolism in some laboratory animals such as musk shrews and Mongolian gerbils. Studies confirmed that ω- and (ω-1)-oxidation of fatty acids play crucial roles in the production of insect pheromones of honeybees and in the formation of biopolyesters of higher plants. In addition, the biological significance of ω-oxidation of prostaglandins and leukotrienes is described.

(Communicated by Tamio Yamakawa, M.J.A.)

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© 2013 The Japan Academy
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