One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A polyunsaturated fatty acid present in animal fats. It is important in metabolism, especially in the synthesis of prostaglandins and leukotrienes, and is an essential constituent of the diet.
Alternative name: eicosa-5,8,11,14-enoic acid; chemical formula: C₁₉H₃₁COOH
- ‘The fats in animal products break down into arachidonic acid, a pro-inflammatory fatty acid.’
- ‘Those essential nutrients - including taurine, arachidonic acid, and vitamin A - abound in meat.’
- ‘Psoriatic plaques have been shown to increase arachidonic acid and leukotriene levels compared to normal skin.’
- ‘Enzyme inhibition prevents the formation of thromboxane A 2 from arachidonic acid.’
- ‘The endothelium prevents platelets from adhering by manufacturing prostacyclin from arachidonic acid.’
Early 20th century: arachidonic formed irregularly from arachidic (a saturated fatty acid) from Latin arachis, see arachis oil, + -one + -ic.
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