MadSci Network: Biochemistry

Subject: Physiological and medical effects of l-stereoisomeric sugar

Date: Sat Aug 7 10:21:02 2010
Posted by Matthew
Grade level: grad (science) School: retired
City: Palo Alto State/Province: Ca Country: USA
Area of science: Biochemistry
ID: 1281201662.Bc

The compound "Splenda", uses a sugar that is the opposite stereoisomer to the glucose we can absorb 
and metabolize.  This material is not able to be metabolized.  My questions are:

    a.  It may not be metabolized, but it may be absorbed (at least to some degree) by physical processes
such as diffusion due to its concentration gradient between intestine and bloodstream.  Does this 
happen? And to what degree?
    b. Given some level of absorbtion, the material will then "wander around" in the can't be 
metabolized.  No doubt this level can't get too high (or it'll diffuse back out into the gut again), but if 
there is any, does it have any subsequent effects?  Specifically, can the kidneys excrete it?  Will it show 
up as "sugar" on blood tests for diabetes (these tests are not metabolic, so the chemistry may detect 
both stereoisomers)?

Re: Physiological and medical effects of l-stereoisomeric sugar

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