Metabolomic profiles associated with subtypes of prediabetes among Mexican Americans in Starr County, Texas, USA

Goo Jun, David Aguilar, Charles Evans, Charles F. Burant, Craig L. Hanis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Aims/hypothesis: To understand the complex metabolic changes that occur long before the diagnosis of type 2 diabetes, we investigated differences in metabolomic profiles in plasma between prediabetic and normoglycaemic individuals for subtypes of prediabetes defined by fasting glucose, 2 h glucose and HbA1c measures. Methods: Untargeted metabolomics data were obtained from 155 plasma samples from 127 Mexican American individuals from Starr County, TX, USA. None had type 2 diabetes at the time of sample collection and 69 had prediabetes by at least one criterion. We tested statistical associations of amino acids and other metabolites with each subtype of prediabetes. Results: We identified distinctive differences in amino acid profiles between prediabetic and normoglycaemic individuals, with further differences in amino acid levels among subtypes of prediabetes. When testing all named metabolites, several fatty acids were also significantly associated with 2 h glucose levels. Multivariate discriminative analyses show that untargeted metabolomic data have considerable potential for identifying metabolic differences among subtypes of prediabetes. Conclusions/interpretation: People with each subtype of prediabetes have a distinctive metabolomic signature, beyond the well-known differences in branched-chain amino acids. Data availability: Metabolomics data are available through the NCBI database of Genotypes and Phenotypes (dbGaP, accession number phs001166;

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-295
Number of pages9
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease (awards DK089503, DK097153 and DK118631).

Funding Information:
We thank G. I. Bell (Department of Human Genetics, University of Chicago) for helpful advice and discussions. Some of the data in this study were presented as an abstract at the ADA 77th Scientific Sessions in 2017.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.


  • Amino acids
  • Impaired fasting glucose
  • Impaired glucose tolerance
  • Metabolomics
  • Mexican Americans
  • Prediabetes
  • Type 2 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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