Fatty Acid

[ Fatty_Acid ]

A carboxylic acid with a hydrocarbon chain, usually derived from triglycerides or phospholipids. Fats, oils and esters are comprised of fatty acids.

In the body, fatty acids function as the building blocks of cell membranes and signalling molecules. As fuel, they have a high-energy yield (9 kcal/gram) and are the primary means of energy storage in the body as triglycerides in the adipose tissue.

Fatty acids are typically have an even number of carbon atoms ranging from 4 to 28 in length. They may be saturated, unsaturated, polyunsaturated, cis- or trans-.

Only short-chain fatty acids are able to cross the blood–brain barrier.

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