Glucose and Lactate Oxidation Rates in the Fetal Lamb

William W. Hay, Stephen A. Myers, John W. Sparks, Randall B. Wilkening, Giacomo Meschia, Frederick C. Battaglia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Both glucose and lactate are nutrients of the ovine fetus. Each may be used by the fetus as a fuel for oxidation or as a source of carbon for energy storage and net tissue accretion. The present report describes the oxidation rates of glucose and lactate in vivo for the fetal lamb over a relatively short time period. The fraction of fetal glucose or lactate oxidized was defined as the ratio of 14CO2 excretion across the umbilical circulation to the net entry of [14C]glucose or [14C]lactate into fetal tissues. The fraction of glucose oxidized over a 3-hr study averaged 61.2%, accounting for 2.55 mg · min-1 · kg-1 of glucose oxidized and for 28% of the simultaneous net oxygen uptake. The fraction of lactate oxidized averaged 71.5%, accounting for 4.12 mg·min-1 · kg-1 of lactate oxidized. Oxidation fractions and rates for both glucose and lactate increased with their concentrations in fetal blood suggesting sparing of other fuels for oxidation at higher glucose and lactate concentrations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)553-563
Number of pages11
JournalProceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Sep 1983
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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