Metabolism of dietary derived amino acids in states of anabolic resistance
Critically ill patients often suffer massive losses of body protein, muscle mass, and muscle function, factors that worsen prognosis and prolong recovery. Improved nutrition strategies might be useful to limit protein loss, but a better understanding of protein metabolism in critical illness is needed. We are investigating whole body protein turnover in patients on the ICU, using stable isotope tracer techniques, to study their utilisation of dietary protein. Our results may allow us to develop more efficient feeding schedules to minimize protein loss and its associated morbidity.