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Metabolic Alterations in Human Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells Associate with Progression to Islet Autoimmunity and Type 1 Diabetes

By Partho Sen, Alex M. Dickens, María Asunción López-Bascón, Tuomas Lindeman, Esko Kemppainen, Santosh Lamichhane, Tuukka Rönkkö, Jorma Ilonen, Jorma Toppari, Riitta Veijola, Heikki Hyöty, Tuulia Hyotylainen, Mikael Knip, Matej Oresic

Posted 03 Jun 2019
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/658500

Previous metabolomics studies suggest that type 1 diabetes (T1D) is preceded by specific metabolic disturbances. Here we asked whether distinct metabolic patterns occur in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of children later developing pancreatic β -cell autoimmunity or overt T1D. In a longitudinal cohort setting, PBMC metabolomic analysis was applied in children who either (1) progressed to T1D (PT1D, n=34), (2) seroconverted to ≥1 islet autoantibody without progressing to T1D (P1Ab, n=27), or (3) remained autoantibody negative during follow-up (CTRL, n=10). During the first year of life, levels of most lipids and polar metabolites were lower in PT1D and P1Ab, versus CTRLs. Pathway overrepresentation analysis suggested alanine, aspartate, glutamate, glycerophospholipid and sphingolipid metabolism were overrepresented in PT1D. Genome-scale metabolic models of PBMCs in T1D progression were developed using available transcriptomics data and constrained with metabolomics data from our study. Metabolic modeling confirmed altered ceramide pathways as specifically associated with T1D progression.

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