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Metabolic Signatures Suggest O-Phosphocholine to UDP-N-acetylglucosamine Ratio as a Potential Biomarker for High-Glucose and/or Palmitate Exposure in Pancreatic β-Cells

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Metabolic Signatures Suggest O-Phosphocholine to UDP-N-acetylglucosamine Ratio as a Potential Biomarker for High-Glucose and/or Palmitate Exposure in Pancreatic β-Cells

Saleem Yousf et al. Metabolomics.

Abstract

Introduction: Chronic exposure to high-glucose and free fatty acids (FFA) alone/or in combination; and the resulting gluco-, lipo- and glucolipo-toxic conditions, respectively, have been known to induce dysfunction and apoptosis of β-cells in Diabetes. The molecular mechanisms and the development of biomarkers that can be used to predict similarities and differences behind these conditions would help in easier and earlier diagnosis of Diabetes.

Objectives: This study aims to use metabolomics to gain insight into the mechanisms by which β-cells respond to excess-nutrient stress and identify associated biomarkers.

Methods: INS-1E cells were cultured in high-glucose, palmitate alone/or in combination for 24 h to mimic gluco-, lipo- and glucolipo-toxic conditions, respectively. Biochemical and cellular experiments were performed to confirm the establishment of these conditions. To gain molecular insights, abundant metabolites were identified and quantified using 1H-NMR.

Results: No loss of cellular viability was observed in high-glucose while exposure to FFA alone/in combination with high-glucose was associated with increased ROS levels, membrane damage, lipid accumulation, and DNA double-strand breaks. Forty-nine abundant metabolites were identified and quantified using 1H-NMR. Chemometric pair-wise analysis in glucotoxic and lipotoxic conditions, when compared with glucolipotoxic conditions, revealed partial overlap in the dysregulated metabolites; however, the dysregulation was more significant under glucolipotoxic conditions.

Conclusion: The current study compared gluco-, lipo- and glucolipotoxic conditions in parallel and elucidated differences in metabolic pathways that play major roles in Diabetes. o-phosphocholine and UDP-N-acetylglucosamine were identified as common dysregulated metabolites and their ratio was proposed as a potential biomarker for these conditions.

Keywords: Glucolipotoxicity; Glucotoxicity; Lipotoxicity; Metabolic markers; Pancreatic beta cell; Type 2 diabetes mellitus.

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