Lysine Requirements of Moderately Undernourished School-Aged Indian Children Are Reduced by Treatment for Intestinal Parasites as Measured by the Indicator Amino Acid Oxidation Technique

Authors : Pillai RR, Elango R, Ball RO, Kurpad AV, Pencharz PB

Publication Year : 2015

Abstract :

Lysine requirements of well-nourished children from developing regions have been found to be similar to those of children from developed regions (33.5 mg ⋅ kg-1 ⋅ d-1). However, intestinal parasites have been shown to increase lysine requirements in undernourished adults, and it is not known if a similar phenomenon occurs in undernourished children from poor and unsanitary environments.

Our objective was to measure the lysine requirement of moderately undernourished school-aged Indian children by the indicator amino acid oxidation technique before and after successful treatment for intestinal parasites.

Twenty-one undernourished school-aged children (∼8 y of age) with z scores between -2 SD and -3 SD for height-for-age or weight-for-age, who tested positive for intestinal parasites, were studied before and after successful antiparasite treatment. Children were fed any 2 of 7 levels of lysine intakes (5, 15, 25, 35, 50, 65, and 80 mg ⋅ kg-1 ⋅ d-1) in random order. The lysine requirement was determined by applying a 2-phase linear regression crossover analysis on the fractional oxidation rate of the tracer L-[1-13C] phenylalanine in response to the graded lysine intakes.

The lysine requirement of undernourished children with intestinal parasite infestations was determined to be 42.8 mg ⋅ kg-1 ⋅ d-1 (95% CI: 32.6, 53.1), and after successful antiparasitic treatment it was determined to be 35.5 mg ⋅ kg-1 ⋅ d-1 (95% CI: 25.5, 45.5). The results were significantly different (P < 0.05), although the 95% CIs overlapped.

The lysine requirement in undernourished children is similar to that of well-nourished children, and intestinal parasitic infestation increased the lysine requirement by ∼20%.