Amino acid profile and metabolic syndrome in a male Mediterranean population: A cross-sectional study Academic Article uri icon


  • The metabolic syndrome (MetS) refers to a cluster of clinically relevant factors that increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases and all-cause mortality. Circulating levels of several amino acids and metabolites related to one-carbon metabolism have been associated with cardiometabolic risk factors and MetS. We aimed to identify the amino acid profile that is significantly associated with MetS among an all male Mediterranean population.One hundred middle-aged men (54.6 ± 8.9 years) participated in a cross-sectional study carried out during 2011-2012. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) criteria were used to define MetS. Fasting plasma levels of 20 common amino acids and 15 metabolites related to amino acid and one-carbon metabolism were measured using gas chromatography (GC-MS/MS) and liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Principal components analysis was applied. Fifty-six participants fulfilled the IDF criteria for defining MetS. Five factors were extracted from the 35 measured metabolites. The branched-chain amino acids/aromatic amino acids (BCAA/AAA) related pattern and the glutamine/glycine/serine/asparagine (Gln/Gly/Ser/Asn) related pattern were significantly associated with MetS (odds ratio, 95% confidence interval; 6.41, 2.43-16.91, and 0.47, 0.23-0.96, respectively) after adjustment for age, current smoking status, physical activity level and medical treatment for hypertension, dyslipidaemia, type 2 diabetes mellitus. Further adjustment for liver function markers (i.e. glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase, glutamic pyruvic transaminase, and γ-glutamyltransferase), and plasma adiponectin levels did not significantly affect the associations.The BCAA/AAA pattern was positively associated, while the Gln/Gly/Ser/Asn pattern was inversely associated with established cardiometabolic risk factors and MetS. Plasma adiponectin levels or markers of liver function did not significantly affect these associations.

publication date

  • 2017

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