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Metabolomic profiling identifies potential pathways involved in the interaction of iron homeostasis with glucose metabolism


Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Elevated serum ferritin has been linked to type 2 diabetes (T2D) and adverse health outcomes in subjects with the Metabolic Syndrome (MetS). As the mechanisms underlying the negative impact of excess iron have so far remained elusive, we aimed to identify potential links between iron homeostasis and metabolic pathways.
METHODS: In a cross-sectional study, data were obtained from 163 patients, allocated to one of three groups: (1) lean, healthy controls (n = 53), (2) MetS without hyperferritinemia (n = 54) and (3) MetS with hyperferritinemia (n = 56). An additional phlebotomy study included 29 patients with biopsy-proven iron overload before and after iron removal. A detailed clinical and biochemical characterization was obtained and metabolomic profiling was performed via a targeted metabolomics approach.
RESULTS: Subjects with MetS and elevated ferritin had higher fasting glucose (p < 0.001), HbA1c (p = 0.035) and 1 h glucose in oral glucose tolerance test (p = 0.002) compared to MetS subjects without iron overload, whereas other clinical and biochemical features of the MetS were not different. The metabolomic study revealed significant differences between MetS with high and low ferritin in the serum concentrations of sarcosine, citrulline and particularly long-chain phosphatidylcholines. Methionine, glutamate, and long-chain phosphatidylcholines were significantly different before and after phlebotomy (p < 0.05 for all metabolites).
CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest that high serum ferritin concentrations are linked to impaired glucose homeostasis in subjects with the MetS. Iron excess is associated to distinct changes in the serum concentrations of phosphatidylcholine subsets. A pathway involving sarcosine and citrulline also may be involved in iron-induced impairment of glucose metabolism.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Elevated serum ferritin has been linked to type 2 diabetes (T2D) and adverse health outcomes in subjects with the Metabolic Syndrome (MetS). As the mechanisms underlying the negative impact of excess iron have so far remained elusive, we aimed to identify potential links between iron homeostasis and metabolic pathways.
METHODS: In a cross-sectional study, data were obtained from 163 patients, allocated to one of three groups: (1) lean, healthy controls (n = 53), (2) MetS without hyperferritinemia (n = 54) and (3) MetS with hyperferritinemia (n = 56). An additional phlebotomy study included 29 patients with biopsy-proven iron overload before and after iron removal. A detailed clinical and biochemical characterization was obtained and metabolomic profiling was performed via a targeted metabolomics approach.
RESULTS: Subjects with MetS and elevated ferritin had higher fasting glucose (p < 0.001), HbA1c (p = 0.035) and 1 h glucose in oral glucose tolerance test (p = 0.002) compared to MetS subjects without iron overload, whereas other clinical and biochemical features of the MetS were not different. The metabolomic study revealed significant differences between MetS with high and low ferritin in the serum concentrations of sarcosine, citrulline and particularly long-chain phosphatidylcholines. Methionine, glutamate, and long-chain phosphatidylcholines were significantly different before and after phlebotomy (p < 0.05 for all metabolites).
CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest that high serum ferritin concentrations are linked to impaired glucose homeostasis in subjects with the MetS. Iron excess is associated to distinct changes in the serum concentrations of phosphatidylcholine subsets. A pathway involving sarcosine and citrulline also may be involved in iron-induced impairment of glucose metabolism.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Cardiology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:January 2017
Deposited On:10 Feb 2017 10:56
Last Modified:21 Nov 2017 19:23
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:2212-8778
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.molmet.2016.10.006
PubMed ID:28123936

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