Metabolomic analysis reveals altered metabolic pathways in a rat model of gastric carcinogenesis

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Gastric cancer (GC) is one of the most malignant tumors with a poor prognosis. Alterations in metabolic pathways are inextricably linked to GC progression. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain elusive. We performed NMR-based metabolomic analysis of sera derived from a rat model of gastric carcinogenesis, revealed significantly altered metabolic pathways correlated with the progression of gastric carcinogenesis. Rats were histologically classified into four pathological groups (gastritis, GS; low-grade gastric dysplasia, LGD; high-grade gastric dysplasia, HGD; GC) and the normal control group (CON). The metabolic profiles of the five groups were clearly distinguished from each other. Furthermore, significant intermetabolite correlations were extracted and used to reconstruct perturbed metabolic networks associated with the four pathological stages compared with the normal stage. Then, significantly altered metabolic pathways were identified by pathway analysis. Our results showed that oxidative stress-related metabolic pathways, choline phosphorylation and fatty acid degradation were continually disturbed during gastric carcinogenesis. Moreover, amino acid metabolism was perturbed dramatically in gastric dysplasia and GC. The GC stage showed more changed metabolite levels and more altered metabolic pathways. Two activated pathways (glycolysis; glycine, serine and threonine metabolism) substantially contributed to the metabolic alterations in GC. These results lay the basis for addressing the molecular mechanisms underlying gastric carcinogenesis and extend our understanding of GC progression.




Gu, J., Hu, X., Shao, W., Ji, T., Yang, W., Zhuo, H., … Lin, D. (2016). Metabolomic analysis reveals altered metabolic pathways in a rat model of gastric carcinogenesis. Oncotarget, 7(37), 60053–60073.

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