Elevations of C14:1 and C14:2 Plasma Acylcarnitines in Fasted Children: A Diagnostic Dilemma.
ABSTRACT: To test whether follow-up testing for very long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) deficiency uncovers a diagnosis in patients with elevations of C14:1 and C14:2 plasma acylcarnitines after a controlled fasting study performed for clinically suspected hypoglycemia and to compare the acylcarnitine profiles from fasted patients without VLCAD deficiency vs patients with known VLCAD deficiency to determine whether metabolite testing distinguishes these groups.We performed a retrospective chart review and identified 17 patients with elevated C14:1 and C14:2 plasma acylcarnitine levels after a controlled fast and with testing for VLCAD deficiency (ACADVL sequencing or fibroblast fatty acid oxidation studies). The follow-up testing in all patients was inconsistent with a diagnosis of VLCAD deficiency. We compared the plasma acylcarnitine profiles from these fasted patients vs patients with VLCAD deficiency.C14:1/C12:1 was significantly lower (P < .001) in fasted patients vs patients with VLCAD deficiency. Metabolomics analysis performed in 2 fasted patients and 1 patient with VLCAD deficiency demonstrated evidence for up-regulated lipolysis and ?-oxidation in the fasted state.Elevations of plasma C14:1 and C14:2 acylcarnitines appear to be a physiologic result of lipolysis that occurs with fasting. Both metabolomics analysis and/or C14:1/C12:1 may distinguish C14:1 elevations from physiologic fasting-induced lipolysis vs VLCAD deficiency.
Project description:Because tandem mass spectrometry- (MS/MS-) based newborn screening identifies many suspicious cases of fatty acid oxidation and carnitine cycle disorders, a simple, noninvasive test is required to confirm the diagnosis. We have developed a novel method to evaluate the metabolic defects in peripheral blood mononuclear cells loaded with deuterium-labeled fatty acids directly using the ratios of acylcarnitines determined by flow injection MS/MS. We have identified diagnostic indices for the disorders as follows: decreased ratios of d27-C14-acylcarnitine/d31-C16-acylcarnitine and d23-C12-acylcarnitine/d31-C16-acylcarnitine for carnitine palmitoyltransferase-II (CPT-II) deficiency, decreased ratios of d23-C12-acylcarnitine/d27-C14-acylcarnitine for very long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) deficiency, and increased ratios of d29-C16-OH-acylcarnitine/d31-C16-acylcarnitine for trifunctional protein (TFP) deficiency, together with increased ratios of d7-C4-acylcarnitine/d31-C16-acylcarnitine for carnitine palmitoyltransferase-I deficiency. The decreased ratios of d1-acetylcarnitine/d31-C16-acylcarnitine could be indicative of ?-oxidation ability in patients with CPT-II, VLCAD, and TFP deficiencies. Overall, our data showed that the present method was valuable for establishing a rapid diagnosis of fatty acid oxidation disorders and carnitine cycle disorders and for complementing gene analysis because our diagnostic indices may overcome the weaknesses of conventional enzyme activity measurements using fibroblasts or mononuclear cells with assumedly uncertain viability.
Project description:The period around bariatric surgery offers a unique opportunity to characterize metabolism responses to dynamic shifts in energy, gut function, and anesthesia. We analyzed plasma acylcarnitines in obese women (n = 17) sampled in the overnight fasted/postabsorptive state approximately 1-2 wk before surgery (condition A), the morning of surgery (prior restriction to a 48-h clear liquid diet coupled in some cases a standard polyethylene glycol gut evacuation: condition B), and following induction of anesthesia (condition C). Comparisons tested if 1) plasma acylcarnitine derivatives reflective of fatty acid oxidation (FAO) and xenometabolism would be significantly increased and decreased, respectively, by preoperative gut preparation/negative energy balance (condition A vs. B), and 2) anesthesia would acutely depress markers of FAO. Acylcarnitines associated with fat mobilization and FAO were significantly increased in condition B: long-chain acylcarnitines (i.e., C18:1, ~70%), metabolites from active but incomplete FAO [i.e., C14:1 (161%) and C14:2 (102%)] and medium- to short-chain acylcarnitines [i.e., C2 (91%), R-3-hydroxybutyryl-(245%), C6 (45%), and cis-3,4-methylene-heptanoyl-(17%), etc.]. Branched-chain amino acid markers displayed disparate patterns [i.e., isobutyryl-(40% decreased) vs. isovaleryl carnitine (51% increased)]. Anesthesia reduced virtually every acylcarnitine. These results are consistent with a fasting-type metabolic phenotype coincident with the presurgical "gut preparation" phase of bariatric surgery, and a major and rapid alteration of both fat and amino acid metabolism with onset of anesthesia. Whether presurgical or anesthesia-associated metabolic shifts in carnitine and fuel metabolism impact patient outcomes or surgical risks remains to be evaluated experimentally.
Project description:Large for gestational age (LGA) newborns have an increased risk of obesity, insulin resistance, and metabolic syndrome. Acylcarnitine profiles in obese children and adults are characterized by increased levels of C3, C5, and certain medium-chain (C12) and long-chain (C14:1 and C16) acylcarnitines. C2 is also increased in insulin-resistant states. In this 1-year observational study of 2514 newborns (246 LGA newborns, 250 small for gestational age (GA) newborns, and 2018 appropriate for GA newborns), we analyzed and compared postnatal acylcarnitine profiles in LGA newborns with profiles described for obese individuals. Acylcarnitine analysis was performed by tandem mass spectrometry on dried-blood spots collected on day 3 of life. LGA newborns had higher levels of total short-chain acylcarnitines (p?<?0.001), C2 (p?<?0.01) and C3 (p?<?0.001) acylcarnitines, and all C12, C14, and C16 acylcarnitines except C12:1. They also had a higher tendency towards carnitine insufficiency (p?<?0.05) and carnitine deficiency (p?<?0.001). No significant differences were observed between LGA newborns born to mothers with or without a history of gestational diabetes. This novel study describes a postnatal acylcarnitine profile in LGA with higher levels of C2, C3, total acylcarnitines, and total short-chain acylcarnitines that is characteristic of childhood and adult obesity and linked to an unhealthy metabolic phenotype.
Project description:Very-long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) deficiency, a condition in which the body is unable to break down long-chain fatty acids properly, is the most common fatty acid oxidation disorder in Japan. Tandem mass spectrometry has been used in newborn screening (NBS), allowing the detection of patients with VLCAD deficiency even before symptoms manifest. However, tandem mass spectrometry has a high false positive rate. We investigated the clinical characteristics of patients with false positive results for tetradecenoyl acylcarnitine (C14:1). This case-control study used data collected between the 1st of January 2014 and the 31st of March 2019. The case group was defined as patients having levels of both C14:1 and C14:1/C2 ratio higher than cut-off levels in the first newborn mass screening, who were eventually diagnosed as false positives by attending doctors at Kobe University Hospital, Palmore Hospital, or Kakogawa Central City Hospital in Japan. The control group comprised 100 patients randomly selected from the three facilities. The false positive group included 17 cases, and the control group contained 300 patients. The demographics of each group did not show any significant differences in sex, body weight at birth, Cesarean section rate, complete breastfeeding rate, or the number of feedings per day. However, the change in body weight at the sampling day of NBS in the false positive and control groups was -10.2%, and - 4.6%, respectively, showing a statistically significant difference (p < 0.01). In addition, body weight gain at the one-month medical checkup was 38.9 g/day in the false positive group and 44.1 g/day in the control group (p < 0.05). An elevation of C14:1 carnitine has been reported in situations involving the catalysis of fatty acid. Therefore, patients with severe body weight loss might be associated with poor sucking or poor milk supply, which might cause a false positive elevation of C14:1 and C14:1/C2. In suspected VLCAD deficiency, attending doctors should pay attention to body weight changes recorded during newborn mass screening.
Project description:Identification of very long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency is possible in the expanded newborn screening (NBS) due to the increase in tetradecenoylcarnitine (C14:1) and in the C14:1/C2, C14:1/C16, C14:1/C12:1 ratios detected in dried blood spots. Nevertheless, different confirmatory tests must be performed to confirm the final diagnosis. We have revised the NBS results and the results of the confirmatory tests (plasma acylcarnitine profiles, molecular findings, and lymphocytes VLCAD activity) for 36 cases detected in three Spanish NBS centers during 4 years, correlating these with the clinical outcome and treatment. Our aim was to distinguish unambiguously true cases from disease carriers in order to obtain useful diagnostic information for clinicians that can be applied in the follow-up of neonates identified by NBS.Increases in C14:1 and of the different ratios, the presence of two pathogenic mutations, and deficient enzyme activity in lymphocytes (<12% of the intra-assay control) identified 12 true-positive cases. These cases were given nutritional therapy and all of them are asymptomatic, except one. Seventeen individuals were considered disease carriers based on the mild increase in plasma C14:1, in conjunction with the presence of only one mutation and/or intermediate residual activity (18-57%). In addition, seven cases were classified as false positives, with normal biochemical parameters and no mutations in the exonic region of ACADVL. All these carriers and the false positive cases remained asymptomatic. The combined evaluation of the acylcarnitine profiles, genetic results, and residual enzyme activities have proven useful to definitively classify individuals with suspected VLCAD deficiency into true-positive cases and carriers, and to decide which cases need treatment.
Project description:We report the development of a gene replacement strategy for very long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) deficiency. VLCAD is a mitochondrial enzyme involved in fatty acid beta-oxidation, a key step in energy production during times of fasting or stress. Deficiency of VLCAD classically presents as hepatic dysfunction, hypoglycemia, cardiomyopathy, rhabdomyolysis, and/or sudden death. While dietary therapy for VLCAD deficiency has proven beneficial in preventing some symptoms, a risk of metabolic catastrophic decompensation remains throughout life during times of increased energy demand. We designed a recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) expressing the human VLCAD gene (AAV8-hVLCAD). To demonstrate its in vivo activity, AAV8-hVLCAD was administered via the tail vein to VLCAD-knockout mice. A reduction in accumulated serum long-chain acylcarnitines and increased fasting tolerance judged on blood glucose concentrations were observed as of 11 days postinjections through >100 days. Western analysis of liver, skeletal muscle, and heart extracts using PEP1 anti-hVLCAD antibody revealed short-term hVLCAD expression in the liver and muscle and longer-term expression in heart. This demonstrates the ability of human VLCAD to correct the biochemical phenotype of VLCAD-deficient mice.
Project description:Very long chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) deficiency (VLCADD) is a clinically heterogeneous disorder of mitochondrial fatty acid ?-oxidation usually identified through newborn screening. Genotype-phenotype correlations have been defined, but considerable clinical heterogeneity still exists. Symptoms are often induced by physiological stress such as fasting or intercurrent illness, setting it as an important example of environmental effects altering clinical course in an individual with a genetic disease. However, neither the cellular changes that predispose to this phenomenon nor the alterations it induces are well characterized. We examined the effects of fasting in a knockout mouse model to explore changes in global mitochondria protein profiles in liver and to investigate the physiologically relevant changes that lead to the clinical presentations. An isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantification (iTRAQ) labeling approach was employed to examine mitochondrial proteome changes in VLCAD deficient compared to wild type mice in the fed and fasted states. We identified numerous proteomic changes associated with the gene defect and fasting within relevant metabolic pathways. Few changes induced by fasting were shared between the VLCAD deficient and wild type mice, with more alterations found in the deficient mice on fasting. Particularly, fasting in the deficient mice could reverse the protective response in oxidative phosphorylation pathway seen in wild type animals. In addition, we found that changes in chaperone proteins including heat shock protein 60 (HSP60) and 10 (HSP10) during fasting differed between the two genotypes, highlighting the importance of these proteins in VLCAD deficiency. Finally, the effects on the liver proteome imposed by changes in fasted VLCAD deficient mice indicates that this environmental factor may be an inducer of both cellular and physiological changes.
Project description:Insulin resistance may be linked to incomplete fatty acid ?-oxidation and the subsequent increase in acylcarnitine species in different tissues including skeletal muscle. It is not known if acylcarnitines participate in muscle insulin resistance or simply reflect dysregulated metabolism. The aims of this study were to determine whether acylcarnitines can elicit muscle insulin resistance and to better understand the link between incomplete muscle fatty acid ?-oxidation, oxidative stress, inflammation, and insulin-resistance development. Differentiated C2C12, primary mouse, and human myotubes were treated with acylcarnitines (C4:0, C14:0, C16:0) or with palmitate with or without carnitine acyltransferase inhibition by mildronate. Treatment with C4:0, C14:0, and C16:0 acylcarnitines resulted in 20-30% decrease in insulin response at the level of Akt phosphorylation and/or glucose uptake. Mildronate reversed palmitate-induced insulin resistance concomitant with an ?25% decrease in short-chain acylcarnitine and acetylcarnitine secretion. Although proinflammatory cytokines were not affected under these conditions, oxidative stress was increased by 2-3 times by short- or long-chain acylcarnitines. Acylcarnitine-induced oxidative stress and insulin resistance were reversed by treatment with antioxidants. Results are consistent with the conclusion that incomplete muscle fatty acid ?-oxidation causes acylcarnitine accumulation and associated oxidative stress, raising the possibility that these metabolites play a role in muscle insulin resistance.
Project description:Very long chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) deficiency can present at various ages from the neonatal period to adulthood, and poses the greatest risk of complications during intercurrent illness or after prolonged fasting. Early diagnosis, treatment, and surveillance can reduce mortality; hence, the disorder is included in the newborn Recommended Uniform Screening Panel (RUSP) in the United States. The Inborn Errors of Metabolism Information System (IBEM-IS) was established in 2007 to collect longitudinal information on individuals with inborn errors of metabolism included in newborn screening (NBS) programs, including VLCAD deficiency. We retrospectively analyzed early outcomes for individuals who were diagnosed with VLCAD deficiency by NBS and describe initial presentations, diagnosis, clinical outcomes and treatment in a cohort of 52 individuals ages 1-18years. Maternal prenatal symptoms were not reported, and most newborns remained asymptomatic. Cardiomyopathy was uncommon in the cohort, diagnosed in 2/52 cases. Elevations in creatine kinase were a common finding, and usually first occurred during the toddler period (1-3years of age). Diagnostic evaluations required several testing modalities, most commonly plasma acylcarnitine profiles and molecular testing. Functional testing, including fibroblast acylcarnitine profiling and white blood cell or fibroblast enzyme assay, is a useful diagnostic adjunct if uncharacterized mutations are identified.
Project description: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.