Plasma carnitine levels during intravenous feeding of the neonate

J Pediatr. 1979 Dec;95(6):1043-6. doi: 10.1016/s0022-3476(79)80306-6.


The premature infant has a limited capacity for fatty acid oxidation. This study shows that solutions commonly used for intravenous feedings in the newborn infant contain no carnitine. Infants maintained on this solution have significantly lower total, free, and acylcarnitine levels as compared to when they are fed orally with expressed human milk or a proprietary formula, which is known to contain carnitine. The exogenous supply of carnitine to the premature infant may have a significant influence on the ability to stimulate optimal fatty acid oxidation.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acids / analysis
  • Amino Acids / therapeutic use
  • Carnitine / analysis
  • Carnitine / blood*
  • Fat Emulsions, Intravenous / analysis
  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn*
  • Infant, Premature
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Parenteral Nutrition*


  • Amino Acids
  • Fat Emulsions, Intravenous
  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified
  • Carnitine