OBJECTIVES: To investigate metabolite alterations in the plasma of SLE patients to identify novel biomarkers and provide insight into SLE pathogenesis. METHODS: Patients with SLE (n = 41, discovery cohort and n = 37, replication cohort), healthy controls (n = 30 and n = 29) and patients with RA (n = 19, disease control) were recruited. Metabolic profiles of the plasma samples were analysed using liquid chromatography-time-of-flight mass spectrometry and capillary electrophoresis-time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Transcriptome data was analysed using RNA-sequencing for 18 immune cell subsets. The importance of histidine (His) in plasmablast differentiation was investigated by using mouse splenic B cells. RESULTS: We demonstrate that a specific amino acid combination including His can effectively distinguish between SLE patients and healthy controls. Random forest and partial least squares-discriminant analysis identified His as an effective classifier for SLE patients. A decrease in His plasma levels correlated with damage accrual independent of prednisolone dosage and type I IFN signature. The oxidative phosphorylation signature in plasmablasts negatively correlated with His levels. We also showed that plasmablast differentiation induced by innate immune signals was dependent on His. CONCLUSIONS: Plasma His levels are a potential biomarker for SLE patients and are associated with damage accrual. Our data suggest the importance of His as a pathogenic metabolite in SLE pathogenesis.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Rheumatology (Oxford, England)|
|Publication status||Published - 2023 Feb 1|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pharmacology (medical)