Acetone: A volatile liquid used as an industrial solvent. Acetone is also one of the ketone bodies that is formed when the body uses fat instead of glucose (sugar) for energy. The formation of acetone is usually a sign that cells lack insulin or cannot effectively use the insulin that is available, as occurs in diabetes. Acetone is excreted from the body in the urine.
- Acetyl coenzyme A
Acetyl coenzyme A: An important metabolic intermediate, derived from various pathways, such as glycolysis, fatty acid oxidation, and degradation of some amino acids. It also represents a key intermediate in lipid biosynthesis. Commonly referred to as acetyl CoA.
- Acetyl phosphate
Acetyl phosphate: A molecular ion which plays a role in the synthesis of the four-carbon fatty acid, butyric acid. The formula for acetyl phosphate is: CH3COPO42-.
Acetylcholine: A neurotransmitter released by nerves that is essential for communication between the nerves and muscles.
Acetylcholinesterase: An enzyme that breaks down the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at the synaptic cleft (the space between two nerve cells) so the next nerve impulse can be transmitted across the synaptic gap. Pesticides of the organophosphate and carbamate types act to paralyze and kill insects by inhibiting their acetylcholinesterase. Abbreviated AChE.
Acetylcysteine: An antioxidant drug used to reduce the thickness of mucus and ease its removal. It is also used to reverse the toxicity of high doses of acetaminophen. Acetylcysteine with hydration significantly reduces the risk of contrast nephropathy in patients with chronic renal insufficiency. Also called N-acetyl-L-cysteine.