, Volume 26, Issue 4, pp 266–270

Rat liver outer mitochondrial carnitine palmitoyltransferase activity towards long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids and their CoA esters

  • Grace R. Gavino
  • Victor C. Gavino

DOI: 10.1007/BF02537135

Cite this article as:
Gavino, G.R. & Gavino, V.C. Lipids (1991) 26: 266. doi:10.1007/BF02537135


The activity of the overt form of rat liver mitochondrial carnitine palmitoyltrasferase or CPT0 (EC towards different fatty acid substrates was studied. The following non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and their CoA esters in the presence of 1% bovine serum albumin (BSA) were tested: 16∶0, 18∶0, 18∶1, 18∶2, 18∶3ω3, 20∶4, 20∶5ω3 and 22∶6ω3. The data fit a square hyperbolic model for enzyme catalysis (p<0.001, non-linear regression). Asymptotic Vmax and K0.5, substrate concentration at one-half Vmax, were calculated using total concentrations of acyl-CoA, or unbound concentrations of NEFA. BSA was found to act as a true substrate reservoir for NEFA in that the dissociation of the NEFA-BSA complex was 10–330 times faster than the CPT0 reaction. Regardless of form (NEFA or CoA ester), 18∶3ω3 gave the highest, while 22∶6ω3 and 18∶0 gave the lowest rates of acylcarnitine synthesis. Except for 18∶3ω3 and 18∶2, Vmax for NEFA was generally lower than for acyl-CoA, with the greates differences observed for 20∶4, 20∶5ω3 and 22∶6ω3, suggesting that acyl-CoA synthesis may also be important in the control of the entry of these fatty acids into the mitochondria. The data provide an enzymatic rationale for the relatively low content of 18∶3ω3 in esterified lipid.



fatty acid esters of coezyme A


bovine serum albumin


overt form of mitochondrial carnitine palmitoyltransferase


gas-liquid chromatography


kinetic parameter designating the substrate concentration at half maximal velocity Vmax


non-esterified fatty acids


thin-layer chromatography

Copyright information

© American Oil Chemists’ Society 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Grace R. Gavino
    • 1
  • Victor C. Gavino
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NutritionUniversity of MontrealMontrealCanada