Urine 1H-NMR Metabolomics to Discriminate Neurocysticercosis Patients from Healthy Controls: An Exploratory Study

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  • 1 Departamento de Ciencias—Química, CERMN, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, Lima, Perú;
  • | 2 Cysticercosis Unit, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurologicas, Lima, Perú;
  • | 3 Center for Global Health, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Perú
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The diagnosis of neurocysticercosis (NCC) is principally based on neuroimaging (magnetic resonance imaging or computed tomography), instrumentation that is scarcely available in the rural regions where Taenia solium transmission, primarily occurs due to poor sanitation conditions. Immunological assays for antigen or antibody detection complement the neuroimaging approach. However, no field-applicable assays to diagnose viable NCC or to guide the referral of cases for neuroimaging or for appropriate management are available. We performed an exploratory study on urine and serum samples using 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR)-based metabolomics to discriminate NCC patients (n = 14) from healthy control subjects (n = 22). Metabolic profiles demonstrated a discrimination between the urines of NCC patients and noninfected control subjects with a moderate predictive accuracy (R2 = 0.999, Q2 = 0.434). NMR metabolomics analysis has been proven useful in depicting biomarkers linked to other infectious diseases, various types of cancer, and other disorders. Our results, albeit preliminary, open a door to the development of better methods for detecting NCC through the identification of biomarkers participating in disturbed metabolic pathways.

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Author Notes

Address correspondence to Hector H. Garcia, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Microbiology, Av. H. Delgado 430, SMP, Lima, Perú, or Helena Maruenda, Departamento de Ciencias—Química, CERMN, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, Av. Universitaria 1801, Lima 32, Perú, E-mails: hgarcia1@jhu.edu or hmaruen@pucp.edu.pe.

Authors’ addresses: Juan M. Lopez, Vanessa E. Leyva, and Helena Maruenda, Departamento de Ciencias—Química, CERMN, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, Lima, Perú, E-mails: juan.lopez@pucp.edu.pe, vleyva@pucp.edu.pe, and hmaruen@pucp.edu.pe. Javier A. Bustos, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Centro de Salud Global, Lima, Perú, E-mail: javier.bustos.p@upch.pe. Erika Perez, Sofía Sánchez, and Herbert Saavedra, Instituto Nacional De Ciencias Neurologicas, Unidad de Cisticercosis, Lima, Perú, E-mails: perez.paredes.e@gmail.com, sssboluarte@gmail.com, and hsaavedrapastor@hotmail.com. Isidro Gonzales, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Perú, and Unidad de Investigación/Centro Básico de Investigación en Exámenes Auxiliares en Parasitosis del Sistema Nervioso Central, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Perú, E-mail: isidrogonzalesq@hotmail.com. Hector H. Garcia, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Microbiology, Lima, Perú, and Instituto de Ciencias Neurologicas, Transmissible Diseases, Lima, Perú, E-mail: hgarcia@jhsph.edu.

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