Carnitine metabolism in the vitamin B-12-deficient rat.
ABSTRACT: In vitamin B-12 (cobalamin) deficiency the metabolism of propionyl-CoA and methylmalonyl-CoA are inhibited secondarily to decreased L-methylmalonyl-CoA mutase activity. Production of acylcarnitines provides a mechanism for removing acyl groups and liberating CoA under conditions of impaired acyl-CoA utilization. Carnitine metabolism was studied in the vitamin B-12-deficient rat to define the relationship between alterations in acylcarnitine generation and the development of methylmalonic aciduria. Urinary excretion of methylmalonic acid was increased 200-fold in vitamin B-12-deficient rats as compared with controls. Urinary acylcarnitine excretion was increased in the vitamin B-12-deficient animals by 70%. This increase in urinary acylcarnitine excretion correlated with the degree of metabolic impairment as measured by the urinary methylmalonic acid elimination. Urinary propionylcarnitine excretion averaged 11 nmol/day in control rats and 120 nmol/day in the vitamin B-12-deficient group. The fraction of total carnitine present as short-chain acylcarnitines in the plasma and liver of vitamin B-12-deficient rats was increased as compared with controls. When the rats were fasted for 48 h, relative or absolute increases were seen in the urine, plasma, liver and skeletal-muscle acylcarnitine content of the vitamin B-12-deficient rats as compared with controls. Thus vitamin B-12 deficiency was associated with a redistribution of carnitine towards acylcarnitines. Propionylcarnitine was a significant constituent of the acylcarnitine pool in the vitamin B-12-deficient animals. The changes in carnitine metabolism were consistent with the changes in CoA metabolism known to occur with vitamin B-12 deficiency. The vitamin B-12-deficient rat provides a model system for studying carnitine metabolism in the methylmalonic acidurias.
Project description:Tandem MS "profiling" of acylcarnitines and amino acids was conceived as a first-tier screening method, and its application to expanded newborn screening has been enormously successful. However, unlike amino acid screening (which uses amino acid analysis as its second-tier validation of screening results), acylcarnitine "profiling" also assumed the role of second-tier validation, due to the lack of a generally accepted second-tier acylcarnitine determination method. In this report, we present results from the application of our validated UHPLC-MS/MS second-tier method for the quantification of total carnitine, free carnitine, butyrobetaine, and acylcarnitines to patient samples with known diagnoses: malonic acidemia, short-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (SCADD) or isobutyryl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (IBD), 3-methyl-crotonyl carboxylase deficiency (3-MCC) or ß-ketothiolase deficiency (BKT), and methylmalonic acidemia (MMA). We demonstrate the assay's ability to separate constitutional isomers and diastereomeric acylcarnitines and generate values with a high level of accuracy and precision. These capabilities are unavailable when using tandem MS "profiles". We also show examples of research interest, where separation of acylcarnitine species and accurate and precise acylcarnitine quantification is necessary.
Project description:The relationship between the acid-soluble carnitine and coenzyme A pools was studied in fed and 24-h-starved rats after carnitine administration. Carnitine given by intravenous injection at a dose of 60mumol/100g body wt. was integrated into the animal's endogenous carnitine pool. Large amounts of acylcarnitines appeared in the plasma and liver within 5min of carnitine injection. Differences in acid-soluble acylcarnitine concentrations were observed between fed and starved rats after injection and reflected the acylcarnitine/carnitine relationship seen in the endogenous carnitine pool of the two metabolic states. Thus, a larger acylcarnitine production was seen in starved animals and indicated a greater source of accessible acyl-CoA molecules. In addition to changes in the amount of acylcarnitines present, the specific acyl groups present also varied between groups of animals. Acetylcarnitine made up 37 and 53% of liver acid-soluble acylcarnitines in uninjected fed and starved animals respectively. At 5min after carnitine injection hepatic acid-soluble acylcarnitines were 41 and 73% in the form of acetylcarnitine in fed and starved rats respectively. Despite these large changes in carnitine and acylcarnitines, no changes were observed in plasma non-esterified fatty acid or beta-hydroxybutyrate concentrations in either fed or starved rats. Additionally, measurement of acetyl-CoA, coenzyme A, total acid-soluble CoA and acid-insoluble CoA demonstrated that the hepatic CoA pool was resistant to carnitine-induced changes. This lack of change in the hepatic CoA pool or ketone-body production while acyl groups are shunted from acyl-CoA molecules to acylcarnitines suggests a low flux through the carnitine pool compared with the CoA pool. These results support the concept that the carnitine/acid-soluble acylcarnitine pool reflects changes in, rather than inducing changes in, the hepatic CoA/acyl-CoA pool.
Project description:A large number of birth defects are related to nutrient deficiencies; concern that biotin deficiency is teratogenic in humans is reasonable. Surprisingly, studies indicate that increased urinary 3-hydroxyisovalerylcarnitine (3HIAc), a previously validated marker of biotin deficiency, is not a valid biomarker in pregnancy.In this study we hypothesized that coexisting carnitine deficiency can prevent the increase in 3HIAc due to biotin deficiency.We used a 2-factor nutrient depletion design to induce isolated and combined biotin and carnitine deficiency in HepG2 cells and then repleted cells with carnitine. To elucidate the metabolic pathogenesis, we quantitated intracellular and extracellular free carnitine, acylcarnitines, and acylcarnitine ratios using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry.Relative to biotin-sufficient, carnitine-sufficient cells, intracellular acetylcarnitine increased by 90%, propionylcarnitine more than doubled, and 3HIAc increased by >10-fold in biotin-deficient, carnitine-sufficient (BDCS) cells, consistent with a defensive mechanism in which biotin-deficient cells transesterify the acyl-coenzyme A (acyl-CoA) substrates of the biotin-dependent carboxylases to the related acylcarnitines. Likewise, in BDCS cells, the ratio of acetylcarnitine to malonylcarnitine and the ratio of propionylcarnitine to methylmalonylcarnitine both more than tripled, and the ratio of 3HIAc to 3-methylglutarylcarnitine (MGc) increased by >10-fold. In biotin-deficient, carnitine-deficient (BDCD) cells, the 3 substrate-derived acylcarnitines changed little, but the substrate:product ratios were masked to a lesser extent. Moreover, carnitine repletion unmasked biotin deficiency in BDCD cells as shown by increases in acetylcarnitine, propionylcarnitine, and 3HIAc (each increased by >50-fold). Likewise, ratios of acetylcarnitine:malonylcarnitine, propionylcarnitine:methylmalonylcarnitine, and 3HIAc:MGc all increased by >8-fold.Our findings provide strong evidence that coexisting carnitine deficiency masks some indicators of biotin deficiency and support the potential importance of the ratios of acylcarnitines arising from the acyl-CoA substrates and products for biotin-dependent carboxylases in detecting the biotin deficiency that is masked by coexisting carnitine deficiency.
Project description:The effects of feeding the peroxisome proliferators ciprofibrate (a hypolipidaemic analogue of clofibrate) or POCA (2-[5-(4-chlorophenyl)pentyl]oxirane-2-carboxylate) (an inhibitor of CPT I) to rats for 5 days on the distribution of carnitine and acylcarnitine esters between liver, plasma and muscle and on hepatic CoA concentrations (free and acylated) and activities of carnitine acetyltransferase and acyl-CoA hydrolases were determined. Ciprofibrate and POCA increased hepatic [total CoA] by 2 and 2.5 times respectively, and [total carnitine] by 4.4 and 1.9 times respectively, but decreased plasma [carnitine] by 36-46%. POCA had no effect on either urinary excretion of acylcarnitine esters or [acylcarnitine] in skeletal muscle. By contrast, ciprofibrate decreased [acylcarnitine] and [total carnitine] in muscle. In liver, ciprofibrate increased the [carnitine]/[CoA] ratio and caused a larger increase in [acylcarnitine] (7-fold) than in [carnitine] (4-fold), thereby increasing the [short-chain acylcarnitine]/[carnitine] ratio. POCA did not affect the [carnitine]/[CoA] and the [short-chain acylcarnitine]/[carnitine] ratios, but it decreased the [long-chain acylcarnitine]/[carnitine] ratio. Ciprofibrate and POCA increased the activities of acyl-CoA hydrolases, and carnitine acetyltransferase activity was increased 28-fold and 6-fold by ciprofibrate and POCA respectively. In cultures of hepatocytes, ciprofibrate caused similar changes in enzyme activity to those observed in vivo, although [carnitine] decreased with time. The results suggest that: (1) the reactions catalysed by the short-chain carnitine acyltransferases, but not by the carnitine palmitoyltransferases, are near equilibrium in liver both before and after modification of metabolism by administration of ciprofibrate or POCA; (2) the increase in hepatic [carnitine] after ciprofibrate or POCA feeding can be explained by redistribution of carnitine between tissues; (3) the activity of carnitine acetyltransferase and [total carnitine] in liver are closely related.
Project description:3-Hydroxypalmitoleoyl-carnitine (C16:1-OH) has recently been reported to be elevated in acylcarnitine profiles of patients with propionic acidemia (PA) or methylmalonic acidemia (MMA) during expanded newborn screening (NBS). High levels of C16:1-OH, combined with other hydroxylated long chain acylcarnitines are related to long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (LCHADD) and trifunctional protein (TFP) deficiency.The acylcarnitine profile of two LCHADD patients was evaluated using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometric method. A specific retention time was determined for each hydroxylated long chain acylcarnitine. The same method was applied to some neonatal dried blood spots (DBSs) from PA and MMA patients presenting abnormal C16:1-OH concentrations.The retention time of the peak corresponding to C16:1-OH in LCHADD patients differed from those in MMA and PA patients. Heptadecanoylcarnitine (C17) has been identified as the novel biomarker specific for PA and MMA patients through high resolution mass spectrometry (Orbitrap) experiments. We found that 21 out of 23 neonates (22 MMA, and 1PA) diagnosed through the Tuscany region NBS program exhibited significantly higher levels of C17 compared to controls. Twenty-three maternal deficiency (21 vitamin B12 deficiency, 1 homocystinuria and 1 gastrin deficiency) samples and 82 false positive for elevated propionylcarnitine (C3) were also analyzed.We have characterized a novel biomarker able to detect propionate disorders during expanded newborn screening (NBS). The use of this new biomarker may improve the analytical performances of NBS programs especially in laboratories where second tier tests are not performed.
Project description:To assess the effects of acylcarnitine accumulation on muscle insulin sensitivity, a model of muscle acylcarnitine accumulation was generated by deleting carnitine palmitoyltransferase 2 (CPT2) specifically from skeletal muscle (Cpt2Sk-/- mice). CPT2 is an irreplaceable enzyme for mitochondrial long-chain fatty acid oxidation, converting matrix acylcarnitines to acyl-CoAs. Compared with controls, Cpt2Sk-/- muscles do not accumulate anabolic lipids but do accumulate ?22-fold more long-chain acylcarnitines. High-fat-fed Cpt2Sk-/- mice resist weight gain, adiposity, glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, and impairments in insulin-induced Akt phosphorylation. Obesity resistance of Cpt2Sk-/- mice could be attributed to increases in lipid excretion via feces, GFD15 production, and energy expenditure. L-carnitine supplement intervention lowers acylcarnitines and improves insulin sensitivity independent of muscle mitochondrial fatty acid oxidative capacity. The loss of muscle CPT2 results in a high degree of long-chain acylcarnitine accumulation, simultaneously protecting against diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance.
Project description:The concentrations of CoA in the livers of severely vitamin B(12)-deficient ewes were about 2.6 times those in pair-fed animals treated with vitamin B(12). When the feeding rates of the pair-fed animals were closely similar, the concentrations of methylmalonic acid in deficient livers were about twice those in vitamin B(12)-sufficient livers. The molar concentrations of CoA present were more than three times those of methylmalonic acid in both deficient and treated animals, and it is concluded that the elevated concentrations of CoA in the deficient livers were not primarily due to accumulation of methylmalonyl-CoA.
Project description:In the present paper, we describe a novel method which enables the analysis of tissue acylcarnitines and carnitine biosynthesis intermediates in the same sample. This method was used to investigate the carnitine and fatty acid metabolism in wild-type and LCAD-/- (long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase-deficient) mice. In agreement with previous results in plasma and bile, we found accumulation of the characteristic C14:1-acylcarnitine in all investigated tissues from LCAD-/- mice. Surprisingly, quantitatively relevant levels of 3-hydroxyacylcarnitines were found to be present in heart, muscle and brain in wild-type mice, suggesting that, in these tissues, long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase is rate-limiting for mitochondrial beta-oxidation. The 3-hydroxyacylcarnitines were absent in LCAD-/- tissues, indicating that, in this situation, the beta-oxidation flux is limited by the LCAD deficiency. A profound deficiency of acetylcarnitine was observed in LCAD-/- hearts, which most likely corresponds with low cardiac levels of acetyl-CoA. Since there was no carnitine deficiency and only a marginal elevation of potentially cardiotoxic acylcarnitines, we conclude from these data that the cardiomyopathy in the LCAD-/- mouse is caused primarily by a severe energy deficiency in the heart, stressing the important role of LCAD in cardiac fatty acid metabolism in the mouse.
Project description:Abnormally increased urinary excretion of 3-hydroxyisovaleryl carnitine (3HIA-carnitine) results from impairment in leucine catabolism caused by reduced activity of the biotin-dependent enzyme 3-methylcrotonyl-CoA carboxylase. Accordingly, urinary 3HIA-carnitine might reflect biotin status. Here, we describe an LC-MS/MS method for accurately quantitating the urinary concentration of 3HIA-carnitine at concentrations that are typical for excretion rates that are normal or only modestly increased. This method allows for high sample throughput and does not require solid-phase extraction. We used this method to provide evidence validating urinary 3HIA-carnitine as a biomarker of biotin deficiency in humans. Four healthy adult subjects were successfully made marginally biotin deficient by feeding a 30% egg white diet for 28 days. From study day 0 to 28, the mean urinary excretion of 3HIA-carnitine increased 3.5-fold (p = 0.026). These preliminary results indicate that urinary excretion of 3HIA-carnitine increases with marginal biotin deficiency. If these results are confirmed in studies involving larger numbers of subjects, urinary excretion of 3HIA-carnitine may potentially be a clinically useful indicator of biotin status.
Project description:Calorie restriction (CR), an age delaying diet, affects fat oxidation through poorly understood mechanisms. We investigated the effect of CR on fat metabolism gene expression and intermediate metabolites of fatty acid oxidation in the liver. We found that CR changed the liver acylcarnitine profile: acetylcarnitine, short-chain acylcarnitines, and long-chain 3-hydroxy-acylcarnitines increased, and several long-chain acylcarnitines decreased. Acetyl-CoA and short-chain acyl-CoAs were also increased in CR. CR did not affect the expression of CPT1 and upregulated the expression of long-chain and very-long-chain Acyl-CoA dehydrogenases (LCAD and VLCAD, respectively). The expression of downstream enzymes such as mitochondrial trifunctional protein and enzymes in medium- and short-chain acyl-CoAs oxidation was not affected in CR. CR shifted the balance of fatty acid oxidation enzymes and fatty acid metabolites in the liver. Acetyl-CoA generated through beta-oxidation can be used for ketogenesis or energy production. In agreement, blood ketone bodies increased under CR in a time of the day-dependent manner. Carnitine acetyltransferase (CrAT) is a bidirectional enzyme that interconverts short-chain acyl-CoAs and their corresponding acylcarnitines. CrAT expression was induced in CR liver supporting the increased acetylcarnitine and short-chain acylcarnitine production. Acetylcarnitine can freely travel between cellular sub-compartments. Supporting this CR increased protein acetylation in the mitochondria, cytoplasm, and nucleus. We hypothesize that changes in acyl-CoA and acylcarnitine levels help to control energy metabolism and contribute to metabolic flexibility under CR.