Stool

Putrefactive SCFAs

Optimal Result: 1.3 - 8.6 micromol/g.

What are Putrefactive Short Chain Fatty Acids (SCFAs)?

Valerate, isovalerate and isobutyrate constitute the putrefactive short chain fatty acids (SCFAs). 

Valerate, isovalerate and isobutyrate are produced exclusively by fermentation of protein. These SCFAs are putrefactive, and suggest underlying protein maldigestion, malabsorption, or BOSI.

Dietary protein that is not digested or absorbed in the small intestine may be fermented by colonic bacteria to produce products of protein breakdown, also called putrefactive short chain fatty acids. Genova’s products of protein breakdown (PPB) biomarker assesses total concentration of three short chain fatty acids (SCFAs)- valerate, isobutyrate, and isovalerate- which are bacterial fermentation protein products.

References:

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/3572204/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8140848/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1403462/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1193325/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1494327/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/4023615/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/3363290/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10951507/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2220719/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/7028579/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2265780/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2232102/

What does it mean if your Putrefactive SCFAs result is too high?

Elevated levels result from bacterial fermentation of undigested protein.

Elevated levels of these three SCFAs result from anaerobic bacterial fermentation of polypeptides and amino acids, and suggest hypochlorhydria, exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, and/or protein malabsorption.

Are elevated levels of putrefactive SCFAs always due to maldigestion or malabsorption?

Not necessarily. Other possible causes include:

- Bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine (BOSI) - proteins may be fermented before they are fully digested. Look for elevated levels of Beneficial SCFAs and n-butyrate.
- Gastrointestinal disease - due to the fermentation of blood or mucosal cells delivered to the colon.
- Rapid transit time - results in too little time for digestion and absorption of dietary peptides and amino acids.

Signs, symptoms, and other laboratory abnormalities may help to suggest contributing factors:

- Hypochlorhydria - Possible positive Helicobacter pylori antigen, dyspepsia, or B12 insufficiency.
- Pancreatic insufficiency - Low level of pancreatic elastase or chymotrypsin, possible abdominal discomfort or bloating after eating.
- Malabsorption - Food in the stool, greasy stools, difficulty gaining weight, gluten intolerance, etc.
- Bacterial Overgrowth of the Small Intestine (BOSI) - Elevated Total SCFAs and n-butyrate, possible history of hypochlorhydria or bowel stasis, possible gas and post-prandial bloating. Consider a breath test for BOSI.
- Gastrointestinal disease - Positive fecal occult blood, possible mucus in the stool, signs and symptoms of various disorders.

Treatment should be aimed at the underlying cause:

- Betaine HCl with pepsin, and/or digestive enzymes
- Eradication of H. pylori infection
- Treatment for BOSI

Other testing to consider:

- Bacterial Overgrowth of the Small Intestine Breath test - consider if Beneficial SCFAs and n-butyrate are also elevated
- Helicobacter pylori stool antigen test

Understand blood, stool, and urine medical results from your labs.

10 000+ happy clients
100% satisfaction
★★★★★ customer support

Get 10% off of your first yearly or monthly plan.

Use promocode

Essential Plan


  • Monthly subscription
  • Instant interpretation
  • Use the free self-upload form
  • Additional charge for upload service
  • 2000+ biomarkers explained
  • Recommendations
  • Cancel anytime

Advanced Plan


  • Yearly subscription
  • Instant interpretation
  • We upload five reports for you
  • Use the free self-upload form
  • 2000+ biomarkers explained
  • Nutrition Recommendations
  • Online support
  • Cancel anytime

Own It For Life premium plan


  • No subscription
  • Unlimited access
  • Unlimited storage
  • Instant interpretations
  • We upload ten reports for you
  • Use the free self-upload form
  • 2000+ biomarkers explained
  • Nutrition Recommendations
  • Dedicated support

Healthmatters.io software for professional use.

Welcome to Healthmatters Pro.

Save time on interpreting lab results with the largest database of biomarkers online. In-depth research on any test at your fingertips, all stored and tracked in one place.

Learn More


We implement proven measures to keep your data safe.

At HealthMatters, we're committed to maintaining the security and confidentiality of your personal information. We've put industry-leading security standards in place to help protect against the loss, misuse, or alteration of the information under our control. We use procedural, physical, and electronic security methods designed to prevent unauthorized people from getting access to this information. Our internal code of conduct adds additional privacy protection. All data is backed up multiple times a day and encrypted using SSL certificates. See our Privacy Policy for more details.

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). HIPAA compliance for healthcare professionals
×

Understand Your Lab Result Now

  • Instant interpretation
  • 2000+ biomarkers explained
  • Science-based recommendations
  • Online support
  • Secure and private portal

Get 10% off with promocode:

;