Effects of the Diet and other Metabolic Phenomena on Brain Tryptophan Uptake and Serotonin Synthesis

  • J. D. Fernstrom
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 294)


In this short article, information will be briefly reviewed that ties serotonin (5HT) synthesis in brain to the availability of its amino acid precursor, tryptophan (TRP). In addition, the physiologic factors influencing brain TRP uptake will also be discussed, which include food ingestion, starvation, stress and exercise. Since available data linking these physiologic phenomenon to brain TRP and 5HT synthesis are in many cases incomplete, suggestions will be made concerning future research directions. The hope is that further investigation will resolve some of the perplexing issues in this complex area.


Carbohydrate Intake Serotonin Synthesis Large Neutral Amino Acid Single Meal Carbohydrate Meal 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. D. Fernstrom
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Pittsburgh School of Medicine Western Psychiatric Institute and ClinicPittsburghUSA

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