Synthesis of fatty acids occurs in the cytoplasm and endoplasmic reticulum of the cell and is chemically similar to the beta-oxidation process, but with a couple of key differences. The first of these occur in preparing substrates for the reactions that grow the fatty acid. Transport of acetyl-CoA from the mitochondria occurs when it begins to build up. Two molecules can play roles in moving it to the cytoplasm – citrate and acetylcarnitine. Joining of oxaloacetate with acetyl-CoA in the mitochondrion creates citrate which moves across the membrane, followed by action of citrate lyase in the cytoplasm of the cell to release acetyl-CoA and oxaloacetate. Additionally, when free acetyl-CoA accumulates in the mitochondrion, it may combine with carnitine and be transported out to the cytoplasm.
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