Cross-Sectional Blood Metabolite Markers of Hypertension: A Multicohort Analysis of 44,306 Individuals from the COnsortium of METabolomics Studies Louca, Panayiotis; Nogal, Ana; Moskal, Aurélie; Goulding, Neil J.; Shipley, Martin J.; Alkis, Taryn; Lindbohm, Joni V.; Hu, Jie; Kifer, Domagoj; Wang, Ni; Chawes, Bo; Rexrode, Kathryn M.; Ben-Shlomo, Yoav; Kivimaki, Mika; Murphy, Rachel A.; Yu, Bing; Gunter, Marc J.; Suhre, Karsten; Lawlor, Deborah A.; Mangino, Massimo; Menni, Cristina
Hypertension is the main modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality but discovering molecular mechanisms for targeted treatment has been challenging. Here we investigate associations of blood metabolite markers with hypertension by integrating data from nine intercontinental cohorts from the COnsortium of METabolomics Studies. We included 44,306 individuals with circulating metabolites (up to 813). Metabolites were aligned and inverse normalised to allow intra-platform comparison. Logistic models adjusting for covariates were performed in each cohort and results were combined using random-effect inverse-variance meta-analyses adjusting for multiple testing. We further conducted canonical pathway analysis to investigate the pathways underlying the hypertension-associated metabolites. In 12,479 hypertensive cases and 31,827 controls without renal impairment, we identified 38 metabolites, associated with hypertension after adjusting for age, sex, body mass index, ethnicity, and multiple testing. Of these, 32 metabolite associations, predominantly lipid (steroids and fatty acyls) and organic acids (amino-, hydroxy-, and keto-acids) remained after further adjusting for comorbidities and dietary intake. Among the identified metabolites, 5 were novel, including 2 bile acids, 2 glycerophospholipids, and ketoleucine. Pathway analysis further implicates the role of the amino-acids, serine/glycine, and bile acids in hypertension regulation. In the largest cross-sectional hypertension-metabolomics study to date, we identify 32 circulating metabolites (of which 5 novel and 27 confirmed) that are potentially actionable targets for intervention. Further in-vivo studies are needed to identify their specific role in the aetiology or progression of hypertension.
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