Tissue-Bound Bile Acids
In the last decade, bile acids have attracted the attention of nutritional epidemiologists because of the suspected association between dietary characteristics, fecal steroids, and carcinoma of the colon. The bile acids, cholic and chenodeoxycholic acids, formed in the liver are the primary end products of cholesterol metabolism in higher animals. In the liver, they are conjugated to glycine and taurine and/or sulfated to form water-soluble products that are secreted into the bile. A significant amount of bile salts and neutral sterols that reach the small bowel are reabsorbed and returned to the liver via the enterohepatic circulation, where they exercise negative feedback control on the synthesis of cholesterol as well as on its conversion to bile acids . The neutral sterols (both exogenous and endogenous) and bile salts reaching the distal ileum and large bowel are further metabolized to a number of secondary products under the influence of intestinal microflora. Fecal bile acids and neutral sterols are therefore a complex mixture of closely related compounds, representing the combined effects of hepatic and gastrointestinal metabolism.
KeywordsBile Acid Bile Salt Chenodeoxycholic Acid Lithocholic Acid Fecal Bile Acid
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