Aspartic acid is a nonessential protein amino acid. Aspartic Acid, also known as aspartate, is an excitatory neurotransmitter in the brainstem and spinal cord. Aspartic acid is the excitatory counterpart to glycine, an inhibitory neurotransmitter.
Aspartate is derived directly from dietary protein and, is also synthesized from glutamate via the B-6 dependent enzyme SGOT. Adequate aspartate is required for proper urea cycle function: in a magnesium dependent reaction, aspartate combines with citrulline to form arginosuccinate.
- Low urinary aspartate can result from general dietary protein insufficiency, maldigestion, or possibly B-6 deficiency.
- Low levels have been linked to feelings of fatigue and low mood, whereas high levels have been linked to seizures and anxiousness.
- Inhibits ammonia detoxification in the urea cycle. Can be converted to oxaloactetate using B6 and α-KG and thus enter the Krebs cycle.
- Citric and aspartic acids can drive the Krebs (citric acid) cycle, when combined with B6 and α-KG.
Sometimes seen in epilepsy and stroke. Magnesium and zinc may counteract high aspartic add levels.
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