Metabolic profiling of gender: Headspace-SPME/GC–MS and 1H NMR analysis of urine
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- Zhang, S., Liu, L., Steffen, D. et al. Metabolomics (2012) 8: 323. doi:10.1007/s11306-011-0315-2
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This study aims to investigate the metabolic difference between male and female healthy adults using a combination of GC–MS and NMR metabolomics techniques. While metabolomics has shown wide applications in characterizing the status and progression of many diseases, physiological factors such as gender often contribute high levels of variability that can hinder the detection of biomarkers of interest, such as in disease detection. We carried out a detailed exploration of gender related metabolic profiling of human urine using a Headspace-SPME/GC–MS approach and detected over two hundred peaks. Fifty-nine metabolites were identified using the NIST library. 1H NMR spectroscopy was also utilized, and resulted in the identification of eighteen metabolites. We find that both GC–MS and NMR are able to capture human gender metabolic differences, and their combination allows a significantly better understanding of this difference. Subtle differences between genders are found to be related to the metabolism of fats, amino acids, and TCA cycle intermediates.