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arachidonic acid

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noun ar·a·chi·don·ic acid \ˌar-ə-kə-ˈdä-nik-\

Definition of arachidonic acid

  1. :  a liquid unsaturated fatty acid C20H32O2 that occurs in most animal fats, is a precursor of prostaglandins, and is considered essential in animal nutrition



Origin and Etymology of arachidonic acid

New Latin Arachid-, Arachis + English -onic (as in gluconic acid)


First Known Use: 1913


Medical Dictionary

arachidonic acid

play
noun ar·a·chi·don·ic acid \ˌar-ə-kə-ˌdän-ik-\

Medical Definition of arachidonic acid

  1. :  a liquid unsaturated fatty acid C20H32O2 that occurs in most animal fats, is a precursor of prostaglandins and leukotrienes, and is considered essential in animal nutrition <In a biological system for the regulation of various cell functions, arachidonic acid plays a unique role as a precursor molecule which is transformed into potent mediators with far-ranging effects.—Bengt Samuelsson, Science, 6 May 1983> <The prostaglandins and the leukotrienes share a common origin. They are derived, by two different enzymatic pathways, from arachidonic acid, which is formed in cells whose cell membrane has been disrupted.—Paul D. Buisseret, Scientific American, August 1982> <Fish and other vertebrates also rely on arachidonic acid, another fat, to make compounds for managing stress and immunity.—Janet Raloff, Science News, 13 May 2000> <Pulmonary hypertension is thought to be due to activation and release of vasoactive mediators, including arachidonic acid metabolites, accompanied by diffuse pulmonary microvascular thrombosis—Harriet Kitzman et al., The Journal of the American Medical Association, 19 Apr. 2000>—abbreviation AA, ARA




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