Serum Metabolomics of Slow vs. Rapid Motor Progression Parkinson's Disease: A Pilot Study

James R. Roede, Karan Uppal, Youngja Park, Kichun Lee, Vilinh Tran, Douglas Walker, Frederick H. Strobel, Shannon L. Rhodes, Beate Ritz, Dean P. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

104 Scopus citations


Progression of Parkinson's disease (PD) is highly variable, indicating that differences between slow and rapid progression forms could provide valuable information for improved early detection and management. Unfortunately, this represents a complex problem due to the heterogeneous nature of humans in regards to demographic characteristics, genetics, diet, environmental exposures and health behaviors. In this pilot study, we employed high resolution mass spectrometry-based metabolic profiling to investigate the metabolic signatures of slow versus rapidly progressing PD present in human serum. Archival serum samples from PD patients obtained within 3 years of disease onset were analyzed via dual chromatography-high resolution mass spectrometry, with data extraction by xMSanalyzer and used to predict rapid or slow motor progression of these patients during follow-up. Statistical analyses, such as false discovery rate analysis and partial least squares discriminant analysis, yielded a list of statistically significant metabolic features and further investigation revealed potential biomarkers. In particular, N8-acetyl spermidine was found to be significantly elevated in the rapid progressors compared to both control subjects and slow progressors. Our exploratory data indicate that a fast motor progression disease phenotype can be distinguished early in disease using high resolution mass spectrometry-based metabolic profiling and that altered polyamine metabolism may be a predictive marker of rapidly progressing PD.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere77629
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number10
StatePublished - 22 Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


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