Department of Gastroenterology, Yamagata University School of Medicine, Yamagata 990-9585, Japan. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Serum samples from patients with chronic hepatitis C were subjected to metabolomics analysis to clarify the pretreatment characteristics of their metabolites and also changes in specific metabolites resulting from antiviral therapy with pegylated interferon plus ribavirin (PegIFN/RBV).
The serum levels of low-molecular-weight metabolites in the twenty patients before and 24weeks after completion of PegIFN/RBV therapy were analyzed using capillary electrophoresis and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry.
Ten patients showed a non-virological response (NVR) and 10 achieved a sustained virological response (SVR) with eradication of viremia. The pretreatment levels of tryptophan were significantly higher in the patients of SVR than in those of NVR (p=0.010). The area under the curve (AUC) value of tryptophan calculated from the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve for discriminating SVR from NVR was 0.84 (95% confidential interval, 0.66-1.02, p=0.010). The ROC curve of multiple logistic regression model incorporating the pretreatment levels of tryptophan and γ-glutamate-arginine showed that the AUC value was highly significant (AUC=0.92, 95% confidential interval, 0.79-1.05, p=0.002). Twenty four weeks after completion of treatment, the levels of γ-glutamyl dipeptides, glutamic acid, 5-oxoproline, glucosamine and methionine sulfoxide were decreased, whereas those of 5-methoxy-3-indoleacetate, glutamine, kynurenine and lysine were increased significantly (p<0.05) in both the NVR and SVR patients.
The pretreatment serum levels of certain metabolites including tryptophan are associated with the response to PegIFN/RBV therapy. PegIFN/RBV therapy can ameliorate the oxidative stress responsible for glutathione metabolism.