Tests for Glutamic Acid

Glutamic acid is an essential amino acid released during digestion of the protein, glutamate. Glutamic acid is a catalyst or enzyme in the human body, and it is essential in the creation and coagulation of blood, and in nerve impulse transmission. Therefore, a test of the amount of glutamic acid present in the blood indicates the presence of neurological disorders, type 1 diabetes and fast-growing strains of bacteria, according to the Journal of Clinical Chemistry.

  1. Function

    • Baylor University in "A Comprehensive Review of the Physiology of Hemostasis and Antithrombotic Agents" details the varied roles of glutamic acid in the synthesis of blood in the liver and in initiating the coagulation (clotting) of blood. Glutamic acid regulates oxygen into the brain and affects blood pressure. Nerves release glutamate impulses, which are received by receptors on another nerve cell on peripheral tissue or in the spinal cord.

    Lowers Blood Pressure

    • Dr. Jeremiah Stamler of Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago recommends consuming 4.72 percent more glutamic acid from protein, which reduces blood pressure and fatal strokes by 6 percent and death from coronary heart disease by 4 percent. In "Vegetable Amino Acid Lowers Blood Pressure," Baylor Heart Hospital describes glutamate, the most common vegetable protein, which is also present in meat, as a form of glutamic acid. Consuming 4.72 percent more glutamic acid reduces your systolic blood pressure (top number) two or three points and diastolic pressure (bottom number) one or two points.

    Rapid Indicator

    • Glutamic acid mixed with a few drops of green sodium solution rapidly indicates the presence of specific anerobic bacteria in the blood or urine. According to the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, if the green solution turns blue when urine or blood is added to the solution, bacteria is present in the sample. Light blue indicates a moderate amount of bacteria. Pure bright blue indicates a high concentration of bacteria. Rapid identification of bacteria, such as clostridium difficile, B. fragilis and helicobacter hepaticus, with the glutamic acid test allows immediate treatment of the infection, which might mean the difference between life and death of the patient.

    Tests for Diabetes

    • Glutamic acid tests are only one test. Glutamic acid tests are not conclusive. Some false positives occur. Glutamic acid concentration of less than 20 nanomoles per liter is an indicator of endocrine disorders, type 1 insulin dependent diabetes mellitus, thyroiditis or pernicious anemia. A low glutamic acid test concentration with insulin antibodies predicts Type 1 diabetes. Eighty percent of Type 1 diabetics have the low glutamic acid titer. Type 2 diabetics do not.

    Tests of Thyroid Function and Nerve Transmission

    • Low glutamic acid concentration is also indicative of myasthenia gravis, thyroiditis, Graves' disease or hypothyroidism if thyroid antibodies are also present. Addison's disease, vitiligo, cystic fibrosis and Guillain-Barré syndrome present low glutamic acid concentrations.

      Glutamic acid is involved in nerve impulse transmission. Therefore, glutamic acid concentrations also indicate neurological disorders. Encephalitis, cerebellitis, brain-stem encephalitis, epilepsy and myelitis are indicated by glutamic acid concentrations greater than 20 nanomoles per liter.

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