Biochemistry (Moscow)

, Volume 74, Issue 12, pp 1350–1355 | Cite as

Microbial origin of phenylcarboxylic acids in the human body

  • N. V. BeloborodovEmail author
  • A. S. Khodakova
  • I. T. Bairamov
  • A. Yu. Olenin


In previous studies we demonstrated increased amounts of phenylcarboxylic acids (PCA) in serum of patients with sepsis. This observation prompted the present study of the ability of the human microbiome bacteria to produce PCA in vitro. PCA were detected in culture media by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Increased amounts of phenyllactic and p-hydroxyphenyllactic acids were produced by Klebsiella pneumonia, Escherichia coli, and Staphylococcus aureus. Certain strict anaerobes (bifidobacteria, lactobacteria, eubacteria) have also been found to actively produce these PCA, but these bacteria are not etiologically linked to sepsis. Thus our results demonstrate the ability of sepsis-related bacteria to produce PCA and provide experimental support for the theory that the accumulation of PCA in the blood of patients with sepsis results from microbial degradation of phenylalanine and tyrosine.

Key words

phenylcarboxylic acids phenyllactic acid p-hydroxyphenyllactic acid endogenous microflora facultative and strict anaerobes sepsis gas chromatography-mass spectrometry 



gas chromatography-mass spectrometry


Human Metabolome Database


p-hydroxyphenylacetic acid


p-hydroxyphenyllactic acid


p-hydroxyphenylpropionic acid


phenylacetic acid


phenylcarboxylic acid


phenyllactic acid


phenylpropionic acid




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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. V. Beloborodov
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. S. Khodakova
    • 1
  • I. T. Bairamov
    • 1
  • A. Yu. Olenin
    • 1
  1. 1.Bakoulev Scientific Center for Cardiovascular SurgeryRussian Academy of Medical SciencesMoscowRussia

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