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PLoS One. 2016 Feb 25;11(2):e0149823. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0149823. eCollection 2016.

Metabolomics Reveals Dynamic Metabolic Changes Associated with Age in Early Childhood.

Author information

1
Department of Pediatrics, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Keelung, and Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan.
2
Community Medicine Research Centre, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Keelung, Taiwan.
3
Department of Pediatrics, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Linkou, and Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan.
4
Department of Medical Imaging and Intervention, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Linkou, and Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan.
5
Department of Nutrition Therapy, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Keelung, Taiwan.
6
Graduate Institute of Medical Biotechnology, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

A detailed understanding of the metabolic processes governing rapid growth in early life is still lacking. The aim of this study was to investigate the age-related metabolic changes in healthy children throughout early childhood.

METHODS:

Healthy children from a birth cohort were enrolled in this study from birth through 4 years of age. Urinary metabolites were assessed at 6 months, and 1, 2, 3, and 4 yr of age by using 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy coupled with multivariate statistical analysis including principal components analysis (PCA) and partial least-squares discriminant analysis (PLS-DA). Metabolic pathway analysis was performed using the MetPA web tool.

RESULTS:

A total of 105 urine samples from 30 healthy children were collected and analyzed. Metabolites contributing to the discrimination between age groups were identified by using supervised PLS-DA (Q2 = 0.60; R2 = 0.66). A significantly higher urinary trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) and betaine level was found in children aged 6 months. Urinary glycine and glutamine levels declined significantly after 6 months of age and there was a concomitant compensatory increase in urinary creatine and creatinine. Metabolic pathway analysis using MetPA revealed similar nitrogen metabolism associated energy production across all ages assessed. Pathways associated with amino acid metabolism were significantly different between infants aged 6 months and 1 year, whereas pathways associated with carbohydrate metabolism were significantly different between children at ages 2 and 3 years.

CONCLUSIONS:

Urine metabolomics ideally represents dynamic metabolic changes across age. Urinary metabolic profiles change significantly within the first year of life, which can potentially provide crucial information about infant nutrition and growth.

PMID:
26914934
PMCID:
PMC4767415
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0149823
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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