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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

Metabolic Profiling of Amino Acids Associated with Mortality in Patients with Acute Paraquat Poisoning

Xiuxian Wan, Chunyu Zhou, Xin Kang, Dayong Hu, Wen Xue, Xinhua Li, Hui Bao, Ai Peng

Department of Nephrology and Rheumatology, Affiliated Shanghai Tenth Clinical Medical College of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24: CLR1397-1407

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.905843

Available online: 2018-03-07

Published: 2018-03-07


BACKGROUND: Paraquat is a major cause of fatal poisoning after ingestion in many parts of Asia and the Pacific nations. However, optimal prognostic indicators to evaluate patient mortality have not been unequivocally established. Following acute paraquat poisoning, a number of amino acids (AA), are abnormally expressed in metabolic pathways. However, the alterations in AA metabolite levels after paraquat poisoning remain unknown in humans.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: In the present study, 40 patients were enrolled, of whom 16 survived and 24 died. A metabolomics approach was used to assess changes in AA metabolites in plasma and its potential prognostic value following paraquat poisoning. Mass spectrometry (MS) based on metabolite identification was conducted.
RESULTS: Twenty-five AA levels in plasma were abnormally expressed in non-survivor patients. Among them, creatinine, indolelactate, and 3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)lactate were found to be highly correlated with paraquat death prediction. It was noted that the intensity levels of these 3 AA metabolites in the non-survivor group were substantially higher than in the survivor group. Furthermore, we examined receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves for clinical validation. ROC results showed that 3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)lactate had the highest AUC of 0.84, while indolelactate and creatinine had AUCs of 0.75 and 0.83, respectively, suggesting that they can be used to predict the clinical outcome (although this methodology is expensive to implement).
CONCLUSIONS: Metabolic profiling of AA levels could be a reliable tool to identify effective indicators for the early high precision prognosis of paraquat poisoning.

Keywords: Amino Acids, Acidic, Metabolomics, Mortality, Paraquat