Wilson disease (WD) is a genetic copper overload condition characterized by hepatic and neuropsychiatric symptoms with a not well-understood pathogenesis. Dysregulated methionine cycle is reported in animal models of WD, though not verified in humans. Choline is essential for lipid and methionine metabolism. Defects in neurotransmitters as acetylcholine, and biogenic amines are reported in WD; however, less is known about their circulating precursors. We aimed to study choline, methionine, aromatic amino acids, and phospholipids in serum of WD subjects. Hydrophilic interaction chromatography-quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry was employed to profile serum of WD subjects categorized as hepatic, neurologic, and pre-clinical. Hepatic transcript levels of genes related to choline and methionine metabolism were verified in the Jackson Laboratory toxic milk mouse model of WD (tx-j). Compared to healthy subjects, choline, methionine, ornithine, proline, phenylalanine, tyrosine, and histidine were significantly elevated in WD, with marked alterations in phosphatidylcholines and reductions in sphingosine-1-phosphate, sphingomyelins, and acylcarnitines. In tx-j mice, choline, methionine, and phosphatidylcholine were similarly dysregulated. Elevated choline is a hallmark dysregulation in WD interconnected with alterations in methionine and phospholipid metabolism, which are relevant to hepatic steatosis. The elevated phenylalanine, tyrosine, and histidine carry implications for neurologic manifestations and are worth further investigation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry