Kynurenic acid is a metabolite of tryptophan. This chemical is found throughout the body, and appears to act on glutamate receptors in the brain. One effect of Kynurenic acid on Gpr35 signaling that has been discovered is enhanced cellular respiration.
Interestingly, high levels of kynurenic acid have been found in the brains of patients with schizophrenia. Further research is ongoing to understand its role in that disease. Less is known about its role in the rest of the body.
Kynurenic Acid Combined with Consistent Exercise and Feeding
One relationship that has been discovered is that exercise causes the levels of kynurenic acid to increase in skeletal muscle. Recently, Agudelo et al. sought to tease the effects of kynurenic acid on metabolism apart from the effects of exercise alone.
To accomplish this, mice were dosed with kynurenic acid without changing their exercise habits. Their metabolisms then sped up, but their level of exercise and feeding stayed the same. As a result, the mice lost some weight after two weeks, which came from a reduction in their white fat stores.
Kynurenic Acid Combined with Altered Diets and Genetics
Previous research has shown that kynurenic acid activates the receptor protein Gpr35. Agudelo et al. wanted to test whether Gpr35 was involved in the relationship between kynurenic acid and metabolism.
To test the effect of Kynurenic acid on Gpr35 signaling, they put mice on a high-fat diet that causes them to gain weight. When they dosed the mice on the high-fat diet with kynurenic acid, they prevented the mice from gaining weight.
When they dosed mice that lack Gpr35 with kynurenic acid, the mice gained weight as usual. These results suggest that Gpr35 signaling is important for kynurenic acid’s role in raising metabolism.
In conclusion, this study increases the understanding of both kynurenic acid and Gpr35. A therapeutic application for kynurenic acid is a long way off, but worth studying.