Effects of oral aspartame on plasma phenylalanine in humans and experimental rodents
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All aspartame does given to humans cause greater elevations in plasma (and, presumably, brain) phenylalanine than in plasma tyrosine. In contrast, doses of aspartame usually used in experiments on rodents preferentially elevate tyrosine. Since phenylalanine can inhibit brain catecholamine synthesis while tyrosine is the antidote for this effect, we determined the aspartame dose that would be needed to elevate phenylalanine more than tyrosine in rodents, using published data. In general rodents need 60 times as much aspartame, on a mg/kg basis, as humans to obtain comparable elevations in phenylalanine with respect to tyrosine.
Key wordsAspartame phenylalanine tyrosine
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