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September 1941

A STUDY OF THE METABOLISM OF INGESTED PECTIN

Author Affiliations

CHICAGO
From the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Northwestern University Medical School.

Am J Dis Child. 1941;62(3):499-511. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1941.02000150023004
Abstract

The use of an apple diet and pectin in the treatment of diarrhea raises the question of the fate of pectin in the alimentary tract and the body tissues.1 How the apple diet or pectin exerts a favorable influence has not been elucidated. It is certain that ingested pectin is decomposed in the alimentary tract of the young adult, since only 10 per cent or less can be recovered from the feces.2 When pectin is given to a fasting subject, however, less is decomposed; the amount decomposed is influenced, apparently, by the rate of passage through the alimentary tract and perhaps by whether the nitrogen, which is necessary to sustain the organism or organisms involved,3 is present. The results of experiments on ileostomized human and canine subjects2c and the failure of the enzymes in the digestive juices to hydrolyze pectin4 show that the decomposition of

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