NanoLC-timsTOF-Assisted Analysis of Glycated Albumin in Diabetes-Affected Plasma and Tears

Yanqi Tan, Eduardo De La Toba, Stanislav S. Rubakhin, Leanne T. Labriola, Christine Canfield, Dipanjan Pan, Jonathan V. Sweedler

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Glycation is a spontaneous and nonenzymatic glycosylation. Glycated albumin (GA), which serves as an important biomarker in plasma in the diagnosis and characterization of diabetes, can be passively filtered from the plasma to tears. Tears are important targets for research in clinical diagnostics due to the ability to collect this biofluid noninvasively and repeatably. Therefore, the analysis of GA in tear film provides information for monitoring diabetes progression independent of blood pathologies. Due to the limited volume (1-5 μL) of natural tear film, we developed a small volume assay using a nano liquid chromatography-trapped ion mobility spectrometry-time-of-flight MS (nanoLC-timsTOF) platform for the analysis of glycated albumin in human plasma and tear films affected by diabetes. The peptides containing lysine 525, which is the main glycation site in GA, were relatively quantified and represented as the GA level. The results of the measurements showed that GA levels were significantly higher in diabetes-affected plasma and tears compared to controls with a p-value < 0.01. A strong correlation of glycated albumin levels was observed for the plasma and tear film in diabetes samples (Pearson coefficient 0.92 with a p-value 0.0012). Moreover, the number of GA glycation sites was significantly higher in diabetes-affected plasma and tear comparatively to controls. Among all the glycation sites in plasma albumin, the GA level quantified by lysine 136/137 had a strong correlation with more commonly used lysine 525, suggesting that lysine 136 /137 is an alternative diabetes biomarker in plasma. Overall, our findings demonstrate GA in tears as a biomarker for monitoring diabetes progression, highlighting new possibilities for quick and noninvasive diabetes detection and monitoring.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-113
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 3 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Structural Biology
  • Spectroscopy

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