Question 9

Outline the fate of the triglyceride component of orally ingested fat

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College Answer

Triglycerides (TGs) consist of a 3 carbon glycerol backbone with 3 fatty acids attached. It was 
expected candidates would detail the fate from digestion and absorption, through distribution to 
storage and metabolism. Most candidates knew the absorptive processes very well but 
knowledge of TGs fate once it was packaged into a chylomicron was lacking. Some detail was 
expected on the passage to the liver via the portal circulation, packing and unpacking and 
distribution to the body. Very few candidates mentioned appropriate hormones and enzymes, 
target cells or ketogenesis. Some discussion was expected on the possible fate of acetyl 
Co A. Comment on the synthesis of lipids and the existence of essential fatty acids gained 
additional marks.