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By Marcel Florink (Auth.)

ISBN-10: 0123955211

ISBN-13: 9780123955210

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The ammonia resulting from the deamidation of glutamine by the kidney is eliminated in the urine as ammonium salts of weak acids, as part of the system of physiological regulation of the acid-base balance. The ammonia formed by the deamination of amino acids in the liver of mammals is transformed there into urea by the mechanism known as the "ornithine cycle" (Krebs and Henseleit, 146). Ornithine, an amino acid found in the liver, plays a fundamental part in this cycle, and by combining with carbon dioxide and ammonia is changed to the amino acid citrulline.

50 V. BIOCHEMICAL ADAPTATIONS 51 environment, were not likewise integrated. In fact, in a number of instances it can be demonstrated that a biochemical constituent or some peculiarity of a biochemical system determines the outward aspects of an animal's existence in nature. In other words, it is possible to show that life would be impossible in the absence of some biochemical constituent. Thus, if an organism lacks insulin, the biochemical constituent secreted by the Isles of Langerhans of the pancreas, diabetes develops and death may result from acidosis.

By this reasoning we can gain information from Table VIII regarding the probable nature of purine metabolism in different groups of animals. A summary of the available information is presented in Table IX. The one conclusion that can be drawn from the data presented in Table IX is that, contrary to the classical view, the most primitive types of purine metabolism found in the Metazoa, especially the types encountered in marine invertebrates, are not those which involve little transformation 48 BIOCHEMICAL EVOLUTION TABLE IX (Florkin and Duchateau, 100) 1 Uric Acid 1 1 (Uricase) ι Allantoin I 1 (Allantoinase) ι Man and other primates, birds, terrestrial reptiles Cyclostomes Insects (except Diptera) Mammals (except man and other primates) Diptera Gastropods One group of Teleosts (Salmonidae, Pleuronectidae, Anguillidae) Allantoic Acid 1 1 (Allantoicase) ι Urea !

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Biochemical Evolution by Marcel Florink (Auth.)

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