Altered peripheral amino acid profile indicate a systemic impact of active celiac disease and a possible role of amino acids in disease pathogenesis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: We have previously performed a Genome Wide Association and linkage study that indicated a new disease triggering mechanism involving amino acid metabolism and nutrient sensing signaling pathways. Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate if plasma amino acid levels differed among children with celiac disease compared with disease controls. Materials and methods: Fasting plasma samples from 141 children with celiac disease and 129 non-celiac disease controls, were analyzed for amino acid levels by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS). A general linear model using age and experimental effects as covariates was used to compare amino acid levels between children with a diagnosis of celiac disease and controls. Results: Seven out of twenty-three analyzed amino acids were elevated in children with celiac disease compared with controls (tryptophan, taurine, glutamic acid, proline, ornithine, alanine and methionine). The significance of the individual amino acids do not survive multiple correction, however, multivariate analyses of the amino acid profile showed significantly altered amino acid levels in children with celiac disease overall and after correction for age, sex and experimental effects (p = 8.4 × 10-8). Conclusion: These findings support the idea that amino acids could influence systemic inflammation and play a possible role in disease pathogenesis.


  • Åsa Torinsson Naluai
  • Ladan Saadat Vafa
  • Audur H. Gudjonsdottir
  • Henrik Arnell
  • Lars Browaldh
  • Staffan Nilsson
  • Daniel Agardh
External organisations
  • University of Gothenburg
  • Sahlgrenska Academy
  • Karolinska University Hospital
  • Karolinska Institutet
  • Chalmers University of Technology
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0193764
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Mar 1
Publication categoryResearch