Essential and non-essential amino acid requirement in injured patients receiving total parenteral nutrition

Intensive Care Med. 1988;14(4):399-405. doi: 10.1007/BF00262896.


The metabolic derangements of injury are known to influence nitrogen (N) requirements whilst less is known about individual amino acid (AA) requirements. This study was designed to investigate prospectively N vs AA requirement in 36 injured patients treated with total parenteral nutrition (TPN). The non-protein caloric input was 30 kcal kg-1 day-1 and three AA solutions were assessed containing the same AAs but in different proportion. Overall N intake was set at 0.35 g N kg-1 day-1 for solution A and B and 0.24 g N kg-1 day-1 for solution C. Solution B was similar to A, both being enriched in branched chain AAs (BCAA: 0.69 g kg-1 day-1 in B compared with 0.55 g kg-1 day-1 in A) while decreased in aromatic and sulphurated forms (1.75 times the normal need). Solution C was designed to maintain a daily input of BCAA similar to A (0.52 g kg-1 day-1) but with the supply of aromatic and sulphurated AA between solutions A and B, the supply of other AAs (lysine, theonine, histidine, arginine, glycine) being dependent on the selected N intake. For all the essential AAs the supply was always greater than normal allowances. Increasing BCAA over 0.55 g kg-1 day-1 did not improve N balance when N intake was 0.35 g kg-1 day-1, whilst nutrition with solution C was unable to maintain N balance. Moreover we found indirect evidence that this N intake, 0.52 g kg-1 day-1 was more sparing than 0.37 g kg-1 day-1 of BCAA.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amino Acids*
  • Amino Acids, Essential*
  • Critical Care
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nutritional Requirements
  • Parenteral Nutrition, Total*
  • Wounds and Injuries / metabolism*


  • Amino Acids
  • Amino Acids, Essential