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Bioavailability of tryptophan in selected foods by rat growth assay

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Tryptophan bioavailabilities were estimated in 16 protein sources using 10 day rat growth assays with casein as the reference protein. Growth responses of rats fed test food diets were compared to growth responses of rats fed basal diets with graded levels of tryptophan ranging from 50 to 100 mg of tryptophan/100 g diet. Estimates of tryptophan availabilities were 85–100% for all products except whole wheat cereal (73%) and pinto beans (59%). Results of a previous study on lysine availability indicated that poor response to pinto beans was due either to poor digestibility or to the presence of some unidentified growth inhibitor.

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McDonough, F.E., Bodwell, C.E., Wells, P.A. et al. Bioavailability of tryptophan in selected foods by rat growth assay. Plant Food Hum Nutr 39, 85–91 (1989). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01092405

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Key words

  • protein quality
  • amino acids
  • rats
  • bioavailability