Targeted metabolomic analysis of nitric oxide/L-arginine pathway metabolites in dementia: association with pathology, severity, and structural brain changes.
Targeted metabolomic analysis of nitric oxide/L-arginine pathway metabolites in dementia: association with pathology, severity, and structural brain changes
L-Arginine/NO pathway is altered in Alzheimer disease (AD). Its clinical relevance and pathway status in vascular dementia (VaD) are unknown. Using targeted metabolomics (a liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry) we assessed L-arginine, L-citrulline, dimethylamine (DMA), asymmetric dimethyl arginine (ADMA) and symmetric dimethylarginine (SDMA) in AD (n = 48), mixed-type dementia (MD; n = 34), VaD (n = 40) and non-demented individuals (n = 140) and determined their clinical relevance (the association with dementia pathology, cognitive impairment, and structural brain damage). L-Arginine, ADMA, L-arginine/ADMA, and L-citrulline levels were decreased in dementia and L-arginine, L-citrulline, age and sex were its independent predictors correctly classifying 91% of cases. L-Arginine and L-arginine/ADMA were differentiating between VaD and AD with moderate accuracy. L-Arginine, L-arginine/ADMA, SDMA, and DMA reflected structural brain changes. DMA and L-citrulline were elevated in patients with strategic infarcts and SDMA, L-arginine/ADMA, and DMA were independent predictors of Hachinski ischemic score.
ADMA and SDMA accumulation reflected severity of cognitive impairment. In summary, L-Arginine/NO pathway is altered in neurodegenerative and vascular dementia in association with neurodegenerative and vascular markers of brain damage and severity of cognitive impairment.