During processing of foods, the Maillard reaction occurs, resulting in the formation of advanced Maillard reaction products (MRP). Varying amounts of MRP have been found in commercially processed pet foods. Dietary MRP can be absorbed and contribute to the endogenous pool of MRP and possibly the etiology of age-related diseases. The aim of the present study was to determine urinary excretion of dietary MRP in cats fed commercial moist and dry foods. A pilot study with 10 cats, conducted to determine the adaptation time required for stable urinary excretion of MRP when changing to a diet with contrasting MRP content, showed an adaptation time of 1 d for all components. In the main study, 6 commercially processed dry and 6 moist diets were fed to 12 adult female cats in 2 parallel randomized, 36-d Latin square designs. The 24-h urine was collected quantitatively using modified litter boxes, and fructoselysine (FL), carboxymethyllysine (CML), and lysinoalanine (LAL) were analyzed using ultra high performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) - mass spectrometer. Daily urinary excretion of FL and CML showed a positive relationship with daily intake in the dry (P = 0.03 and P < 0.01, respectively) and moist (P < 0.01) foods. For LAL, no significant relationship was observed. Urinary recovery (% ingested) showed a negative relationship with daily intake for FL, CML, and LAL in the dry foods (P < 0.01, P < 0.01, and P = 0.08, respectively) and for CML and LAL in the moist foods (P < 0.01). The observed increase in urinary excretion with increasing dietary intake indicates that dietary MRP were absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract of cats and excreted in the urine. The adaptation time with change in diet indicates a likely effective excretion of MRP. Minimum apparent absorption of FL, CML, and LAL was found to range between 8% and 23%, 25% and 73%, and 6% and 19%, respectively. The observed decrease in urinary recovery suggests a limiting factor in digestion, absorption, metabolism, or urinary excretion. This study shows that dietary MRP in commercial diets are absorbed and excreted via the kidneys in cats.
- Dietary maillard reaction products
- Metabolic transit
- Urinary recovery