The onset of ulcerative colitis (UC) is characterized by a dysregulated mucosal immune response triggered by several genetic and environmental factors in the context of host–microbe interaction. This complexity makes UC ideal for metabolomic studies to unravel the disease pathobiology and to improve the patient stratification strategies. This study aims to explore the mucosal metabolomic profile in UC patients, and to define the UC metabolic signature. Treatment- naïve UC patients (n
= 18), UC patients in deep remission (n
= 10), and healthy volunteers (n
= 14) were recruited. Mucosa biopsies were collected during colonoscopies. Metabolomic analysis was performed by combined gas chromatography coupled to time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC-TOF-MS) and ultra-high performance liquid chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS). In total, 177 metabolites from 50 metabolic pathways were identified. The most prominent metabolome changes among the study groups were in lysophosphatidylcholine, acyl carnitine, and amino acid profiles. Several pathways were found perturbed according to the integrated pathway analysis. These pathways ranged from amino acid metabolism (such as tryptophan metabolism) to fatty acid metabolism, namely linoleic and butyrate. These metabolic changes during UC reflect the homeostatic disturbance in the gut, and highlight the importance of system biology approaches to identify key drivers of pathogenesis which prerequisite personalized medicine.
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