Metabolomic fingerprint of severe obesity is dynamically affected by bariatric surgery in a procedure-dependent manner1,2

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Abstract

Background:

Obesity is associated with multiple diseases. Bariatric surgery is the most effective therapy for severe obesity that can reduce body weight and obesity-associated morbidity. The metabolic alterations associated with obesity and respective changes after bariatric surgery are incompletely understood.

Objective:

We comprehensively assessed metabolic alterations associated with severe obesity and distinct bariatric procedures.

Design:

In our longitudinal observational study, we applied a 1Hnuclear magnetic resonance-based global, untargeted metabolomics strategy on human serum samples that were collected before and repeatedly ≤1 y after distinct bariatric procedures [i.e., a sleeve gastrectomy, proximal Roux-en Y gastric bypass (RYGB), and distal RYGB]. For comparison, we also analyzed serum samples from normal-weight and less-obese subjects who were matched for 1-y postoperative body mass index (BMI) values of the surgical groups.

Results:

We identified a metabolomic fingerprint in obese subjects that was clearly discriminated from that of normal-weight subjects. Furthermore, we showed that bariatric surgery (sleeve gastrectomy and proximal and distal RYGB) dynamically affected this fingerprint in a procedure-dependent manner, thereby establishing new fingerprints that could be discriminated from those of BMI-matched and normal-weight control subjects. Metabolites that largely contributed to the metabolomic fingerprints of severe obesity were aromatic and branched-chain amino acids (elevated), metabolites related to energy metabolism (pyruvate and citrate; elevated), and metabolites suggested to be derived from gut microbiota (formate, methanol, and isopropanol; all elevated).

Conclusion:

Our data indicate that bariatric surgery, irrespective of the specific kind of procedure used, reverses most of the metabolic alterations associated with obesity and suggest profound changes in gut microbiome-host interactions after the surgery. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT02480322. Am J Clin Nutr 2015;102:1313–22.

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