A Deeper Look at the Amino Acid Metabolite Mitochondrial Markers on the Organic Acids Test


Kurt Woeller, DO


The mitochondria produce large amounts of ATP through its metabolism of fats and amino acids. However, only certain amino acids get metabolized for precursor molecules used in the mitochondrial for Krebs Cycle activity and eventual electron transport chain sequencing. The Mitochondrial Markers – Amino Acid Metabolites section of the OAT often shows elevated markers. This lecture by Kurt N. Woeller, DO will explore this section of the OAT in more detail and discuss the clinical relevance of these markers.

Q: Would this test reveal perturbations in thiamine status (sufficiency/deficiency, function, other), and if so — how?

A: Only as a reflection of lactic acid levels, and certain markers within the Amino Acid Metabolites (#62-#66).


Q: Would this test reveal perturbations in ALDEHYDE metabolism? Can it distinguish between exogenous exposure; excess endogenous formation; triggering of endogenous cellular defense mechanism; other…?

A: Arabinose (marker #7) is an aldehyde. Other organic acid structures could be checked for aldehyde status. There is always the possibility within certain markers biochemically that its elevation could be influenced by exogenous exposure, but a representative elevated acid could be triggered for multiple reasons. The OAT is not going to identify specifically exogenous aldehydes specifically that I am aware of.


Q: Would this test reveal the status of mitochondrial form and function?

A: The OAT does provide information about the function of mitochondrial activity.


Q: In other words, would it reveal the Healing and Aging Cycle stage? (ref RK Naviaux) Would it indicate changes in mitochondrial membrane permeability?

A: The OAT is not going to get that detailed into mitochondrial permeability. However, mitochondrial membrane disruption could be one reason OAT mitochondrial markers are elevated.


Q: What does elevated suberic acid imply?

A: This is commonly associated with a fasting state but could indicate poor cellular fat metabolism. Generally, the use of L-carnitine is helpful.

Q: Do you use plasma amino acids test along with Organic Acids Test for the information you talk about today? Can we see changes in plasma amino acids when OAT is abnormal?

A: It is possible to see plasma amino acid levels out of balance in relation to certain deficiency states or genetic influences on amino acid pathways.


Q: I am a bit confused if you said marker 31 is a Leucine or Lysine metabolite?

A: Markers #30 and #32 are linked to leucine, and marker #31 is linked to lysine.

Kurt Woeller DO

About the Author

Kurt Woeller, DO

Kurt N. Woeller, DO has been an integrative medicine physician and biomedical Autism specialist for over 20+ years. He is an author of several health books including Autism – The Road To Recovery, Methyl-B12 Therapy For Autism, Methyl-B12 for Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia, and 5 Things You MUST Do Right Now To Help With Your Rheumatoid Arthritis. He is an international speaker, educator, and practicing clinician offering specialized interventions for individuals with complex medical conditions. His health consulting practice for Autism alone is multinational with families from various countries. Dr. Woeller serves as a clinical and lab consult for Functional Medicine Clinical Rounds, as well as provides educational seminars for Mosaic Diagnostics (formerly Great Plains Laboratory). He is co-founder of Integrative Medicine Academy (www.IntegrativeMedicineAcademy.com), which is an online training academy for health practitioners learning integrative medicine.