Amino acid and peptide absorption from the gastrointestinal tract

Fed Proc. 1986 Jul;45(8):2268-71.


Dietary proteins are digested and amino acids from these are utilized by animals to meet body needs for maintenance and production. The form in which these amino acids are absorbed and how they may be transported in the blood seem less certain than once thought. Free amino acids are absorbed and transported in the plasma as well as possibly in the blood cells. These two pools may serve unique functions and therefore deserve individual attention. Peptides are absorbed by the enterocytes. Amino acids in the peptide form appear to be absorbed more readily than free amino acids. The question of whether these peptides are hydrolyzed in the cytosol of the enterocyte or whether they can pass intact into the circulation needs more attention. Evidence suggests that the portal appearance of peptides ranges from negligible contributions to as much as 70% of the amino acids appearing in plasma.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acids / blood
  • Amino Acids / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cattle / metabolism
  • Dietary Proteins / metabolism
  • Intestinal Absorption*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / cytology
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism
  • Male
  • Peptides / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Rumen / metabolism


  • Amino Acids
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Peptides