Altered plasma acylcarnitine and amino acid profiles in type 2 diabetic kidney disease

Wen Han Chuang, Arivajiagane Arundhathi, Ching Lu, Chang Chiang Chen, Wan Chen Wu, Hendra Susanto, Jerry D.T. Purnomo, Chih Hong Wang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Dysregulation of acylcarnitines (AcylCNs) and amino acids metabolism have implicated in abnormality of fatty acid oxidation in type 2 diabetes (T2D). However, it is not well known whether altered plasma AcylCN, and amino acid profiles are associated with albuminuria or diabetic nephropathy (DN) in T2D. Objective: The aim of this study was to elucidate alterations in plasma levels of AcylCNs and amino acids with respect to the T2D patients with various stages of albuminuria. Methods: We recruited 52 healthy subjects as control, and 156 T2D patients which were divided into 52 normoalbuminuria, 52 microalbuminuria, and 52 macroalbuminuria. Plasma 37 AcylCNs and 12 amino acids were analyzed by tandem mass spectrometry. Results: We found that T2D with normoalbuminuria and microalbuminuria had lower shot-, medium-, and long-chain AcylCNs, whereas T2D with macroalbuminuria had higher short-and medium-chain AcylCNs and lower long-chain AcylCNs than healthy subjects. Moreover, estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) was a negative, independent and significant predictor of albumin to creatinine ratio (ACR) levels (β = −0.376, P < 0.001), whereas plasma Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) was significantly and positively associated with ACR levels (β = 0.169, P = 0.049). Furthermore, multivariate ordinal logistic regression analysis revealed that isobutyrylcarnitine (C4) was a positive, independent, and significant predictor of ACR levels with higher odds of having T2D patients with progression normoalbuminuria to microalbuminuria [OR = 9.93, 95 % CI (3.51–28.05), P < 0.001]. Conclusions: The findings suggest that plasma C4 may serve as a potential biomarker for the early stages of DN.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Acylcarnitine
  • Amino acids
  • Diabetic nephropathy
  • Metabolomics
  • Type 2 diabetes


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