Alpha-ketoglutarate (AKG, also called oxoglutarate) plays an important role in several biological functions.
AKG has been used for kidney failure, dialysis, and malnutrition.
Ornithine alpha-ketoglutarate (OAKG or OKG) is made from two amino acids, ornithine and glutamine. It is marketed as a supplement for building muscle. OKG is not specifically discussed in this monograph; it is the topic of a separate monograph.

Related Terms

2-Oxoglutaric acid, 2-oxopentanedoicic acid, 3-methylhistidine, AAKG, acétoglutarate (French), acide 2-oxoglutarique (French), acide a-cétoglutarique (French), acide alpha-cétoglutarique (French), a-ketoglutaric acid, AKG, alanine, alfa-cetoglutarato (Spanish), alpha keto glutarate, alpha ketoglutarate, alpha KG, alpha-cétoglutarate (French), alpha-cétoglutarate d'arginine (French), alpha-cétoglutarate de calcium (French), alpha-cétoglutarate de créatine (French), alpha-cétoglutarate de glutamine (French), alpha-cétoglutarate de L-arginine (French), alpha-cétoglutarate de L-leucine (French), alpha-cétoglutarate de taurine (French), alpha-ketoacid, alpha-ketoanalogs, alpha-ketoglutarate, alpha-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase (KGDHC), alpha-ketoglutarate-pyridoxine complex, alpha-ketoglutaric acid, alpha-ketoisocaproate, alpha-ketoisovalerate, alpha-ketomethylvalerate, ammonia, arginine, arginine alpha-ketoglutarate, arginine aspartate, calcium alpha-ketoglutarate (Ca-ket), creatine alpha-ketoglutarate (creatine AKG), diarginine alpha-ketoglutarate, glutamate, glutamine, glutamine alpha-ketoglutarate, glycine, histidine, hydroxyproline, L-arginine, L-leucine alpha-ketoglutarate, L-lysine alpha-ketoglutarate reductase, L-ornithine alpha-ketoglutarate, lysine, malate-oxalacetate, ornithine, ornithine alpha-ketoglutarate (OKG), ornithine transcarbamylase, oxoglutarate, phenylalanine, proline, pyridoxine AKG (PAK), pyruvate, pyruvic acid, taurine alpha-ketoglutarate, tyrosine, urea.

evidence table

These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
Surgical recovery (Grade: B)
Preliminary research indicates that alpha-ketoglutarate (AKG) may improve recovery and prevent infection after surgery. Further studies are needed before a firm conclusion may be made.
Dialysis (waste removal from the blood) (Grade: C)
Some research supports AKG for improving protein metabolism to treat high phosphate levels and malnutrition in patients receiving blood filtration. However, further research is required.
Liver disease (Grade: C)
There is insufficient evidence to support the use of AKG for liver disease. More high-quality studies are required before a conclusion may be made.