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Supplementary Material for: Determination of Cytokines and Oxidative Stress Biomarkers in Cognitive Impairment Induced by Methylmalonic Acidemia

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posted on 02.08.2021, 13:48 by Li Q., Jin H., Liu Y., Rong Y., Yang T., Nie X., Song W.
Objective: Methylmalonic acidemia (MMA) is the most common organic acidemia in children. Many patients with MMA suffered from cognitive impairments. The aim of this study was to identify the significance of cytokines and oxidative stress biomarkers in MMA-induced cognitive impairment. Methods: We enrolled 64 children with combined MMA and homocystinuria and 64 age- and sex-matched healthy volunteers. Participants were subsequently classified as with or without cognitive impairments using a uniform neuropsychological assessment test. Serum samples were collected. The serum levels of cytokines and oxidative stress biomarkers were measured using the ELISA or chemical methods. Results: Compared to control group, the serum levels of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-6, malondialdehyde (MDA), and nitric oxide (NO) in the MMA patients increased markedly (p < 0.05); glutathione (GSH) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) decreased obviously (p < 0.01). The levels of IL-6, TNF-α, NO, and MDA in the serum were negatively associated with DQ or IQ scores. The levels of GSH and SOD in the serum were positively correlated with DQ or IQ scores. After receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, NO was the most useful individual marker for distinguishing the cognitive dysfunction, corresponding to the area under ROC curve (AUC) of 0.82 (95% CI, 0.74–0.91), sensitivity of 76.60%, and specificity of 80.25%. GSH and MDA were also useful for diagnosis of MMA-induced cognitive dysfunction, corresponding to the AUC of 0.80 (95% CI, 0.70–0.89), and 0.73 (95% CI, 0.63–0.82), respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of GSH were 72.34 and 80.25%, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of MDA were 85.11 and 51.85%, respectively. Conclusions: The high-concentration methylmalonic acid in the blood induced immune cells to release pro-inflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α and IL-6. These cytokines and high-concentration methylmalonic acid stimulated the immune cells to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS). The serum methylmalonic acid, cytokines, ROS, and RNS were across the blood-brain barrier and induced cognitive impairment. The small molecule substances such as serum NO, MDA, and GSH participated in the process of neuroinflammation and oxidative stress injury induced by MMA and could be useful for distinguishing the cognitive impairment.