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Drug information (i. Anti-infectives, ii. cytostatics, iii. others)
Effect of parenteral glutamine supplement on blood albumin levels
  1. I. Yeste Gomez,
  2. R.M. Romero Jimenez,
  3. I. Marquinez Alonso,
  4. B. Marzal Alfaro,
  5. A. De Lorenzo Pinto,
  6. R. Garcia Sanchez,
  7. A. Gimenez Manzorro,
  8. A. Ribed Sanchez,
  9. L. Cortejoso Fernandez,
  10. M. Sanjurjo Saez
  1. 1Hospital General Universitario Gregorio Marañón, Pharmacy, Madrid, Spain


Background Glutamine is an amino acid with several functions. It acts as a precursor of protein synthesis, regulates the transport of nitrogen between organs and tissues, and is involved in active cell replication. Several studies have found a significant increase in albumin levels in patients receiving parenteral nutrition supplemented with glutamine.

Purpose The aim of this study is to compare differences in blood albumin levels between patients receiving glutamine-supplemented parenteral nutrition and patients receiving non-supplemented parenteral nutrition.

Materials and methods Observational study performed from 01/01/2010 to 31/12/2010. Study population: Surgical patients who started parenteral nutrition during the study period and whose blood albumin level had been assessed. Patients were divided into two groups: 1. Glutamine group: patients receiving parenteral nutrition supplemented with glutamine for 7 days. 2. Control group: patients receiving parenteral nutrition without glutamine supplement. The authors recorded blood albumin levels at the start of parenteral nutrition and after 7 days. The authors calculated the variation in albumin levels in both groups and applied the t test to identify significant differences between groups. Data were collected from the software used to prepare parenteral nutrition (Multicomp ®) and from the application used to record clinical laboratory data (IntraLAB ®). The statistical analysis was performed using SPSS ® version 15.

Results The study group comprised 30 patients and the control group 30 patients. The mean increase in albumin level was 0.457 g/dl in the glutamine group and 0.180 g/dl in the control group (p=0.003).

Conclusions The authors found statistically significant variations in albumin levels in favour of the group receiving glutamine-supplemented nutrition. Further controlled studies are needed to confirm this finding.

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