Photograph of Carnitine under the microscope.

The major biochemical function of carnitine is to act as a trans-membrane carrier of fatty acids to the interior of mitochondria. Carnitine is not used in the biosynthesis of proteins or enzymes and has an unusual structure compared to the classical amino acids. It is synthesized naturally from the amino acids methionine and lysine, but good external sources of carnitine are milk products and meats.

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