Jan 17, 2024

A recent study by Dr. Richard Bazinet and team suggests that the liver can generate palmitic acid to maintain brain health!

Principal Investigator Dr. Richard Bazinet (Professor and acting chair of nutritional sciences at U of T’s Temerty Faculty of Medicine) and his team have found that palmitic acid, one of the most common fats in human milk, meats and dairy products, is made by the liver and sent to the developing brain when it’s low in the diet. The preclinical findings underscore the importance of palmitic acid for brain health, and point to a need for more research on lowering its levels in infant formula — a step some manufacturers have taken recently to reduce costs and limit the harvest of palm trees, which are a major source of palmitic acid. The research was supported by funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and the Canada Research Chairs Program.