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[mass noun] An amino acid which is produced by the body and is important in protein metabolism.
- ‘About 50-percent of ingested arginine is rapidly converted in the body to ornithine, primarily by the enzyme arginase.’
- ‘When your body doesn't digest protein completely, gut bacteria convert two of the amino acids in protein, arginine and ornithine, to compounds called polyamines.’
- ‘This may occur in part as a result of pathologically elevated activity of arginase, an enzyme that hydrolyzes arginine to ornithine and urea.’
- ‘The trial was investigating a treatment for a genetic liver condition, where a gene for a liver enzyme, ornithine trans-carbamylase, is either missing or defective.’
- ‘He was undergoing treatment for ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency, a disorder that prevents the liver from effectively processing ammonia, a toxin produced in the breakdown of proteins.’
Late 19th century: from ornitho- (with reference to a constituent found in bird excrement) + -ine.
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