Obesity, adipokines, and C-peptide are associated with distinct plasma phospholipid profiles in adult males, an untargeted lipidomic approach

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C. Austin Pickens, et al
Scientific Reports
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Journal Citations
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Obesity is associated with dysregulated lipid metabolism and adipokine secretion. Our group has previously reported obesity and adipokines are associated with % total fatty acid (FA) differences in plasma phospholipids. The objective of our current study was to identify in which complex lipid species (i.e., phosphatidylcholine, sphingolipids, etc) these FA differences occur. Plasma lipidomic profiling (n = 126, >95% Caucasian, 48–65 years) was performed using chromatographic separation and high resolution tandem mass spectrometry. The responses used in the statistical analyses were body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), serum adipokines, cytokines, and a glycemic marker. High-dimensional statistical analyses were performed, all models were adjusted for age and smoking, and p-values were adjusted for false discovery. In Bayesian models, the lipidomic profiles (over 1,700 lipids) accounted for >60% of the inter-individual variation of BMI, WC, and leptin in our population. Across statistical analyses, we report 51 individual plasma lipids were significantly associated with obesity. Obesity was inversely associated lysophospholipids and ether linked phosphatidylcholines. In addition, we identify several unreported lipids associated with obesity that are not present in lipid databases. Taken together, these results provide new insights into the underlying biology associated with obesity and reveal new potential pathways for therapeutic targeting.

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