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04-05-2024 | METABOLOMIC EPIDEMIOLOGY

Differences in metabolomic profiles between Black and White women in the U.S.: Analyses from two prospective cohorts

Authors: Emma E. McGee, Oana A. Zeleznik, Raji Balasubramanian, Jie Hu, Bernard A. Rosner, Jean Wactawski-Wende, Clary B. Clish, Julian Avila-Pacheco, Walter C. Willett, Kathryn M. Rexrode, Rulla M. Tamimi, A. Heather Eliassen

Published in: European Journal of Epidemiology

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Abstract

There is growing interest in incorporating metabolomics into public health practice. However, Black women are under-represented in many metabolomics studies. If metabolomic profiles differ between Black and White women, this under-representation may exacerbate existing Black-White health disparities. We therefore aimed to estimate metabolomic differences between Black and White women in the U.S. We leveraged data from two prospective cohorts: the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS; n = 2077) and Women’s Health Initiative (WHI; n = 2128). The WHI served as the replication cohort. Plasma metabolites (n = 334) were measured via liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Observed metabolomic differences were estimated using linear regression and metabolite set enrichment analyses. Residual metabolomic differences in a hypothetical population in which the distributions of 14 risk factors were equalized across racial groups were estimated using inverse odds ratio weighting. In the NHS, Black-White differences were observed for most metabolites (75 metabolites with observed differences \(\ge \)|0.50| standard deviations). Black women had lower average levels than White women for most metabolites (e.g., for N6, N6-dimethlylysine, mean Black-White difference = − 0.98 standard deviations; 95% CI: − 1.11, − 0.84). In metabolite set enrichment analyses, Black women had lower levels of triglycerides, phosphatidylcholines, lysophosphatidylethanolamines, phosphatidylethanolamines, and organoheterocyclic compounds, but higher levels of phosphatidylethanolamine plasmalogens, phosphatidylcholine plasmalogens, cholesteryl esters, and carnitines. In a hypothetical population in which distributions of 14 risk factors were equalized, Black-White metabolomic differences persisted. Most results replicated in the WHI (88% of 272 metabolites available for replication). Substantial differences in metabolomic profiles exist between Black and White women. Future studies should prioritize racial representation.
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Literature
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go back to reference Subramanian A, Tamayo P, Mootha Vk, et al. Gene set enrichment analysis: a knowledge-based approach for interpreting genome-wide expression profiles. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0506580102 Subramanian A, Tamayo P, Mootha Vk, et al. Gene set enrichment analysis: a knowledge-based approach for interpreting genome-wide expression profiles. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. https://​doi.​org/​10.​1073/​pnas.​0506580102
Metadata
Title
Differences in metabolomic profiles between Black and White women in the U.S.: Analyses from two prospective cohorts
Authors
Emma E. McGee
Oana A. Zeleznik
Raji Balasubramanian
Jie Hu
Bernard A. Rosner
Jean Wactawski-Wende
Clary B. Clish
Julian Avila-Pacheco
Walter C. Willett
Kathryn M. Rexrode
Rulla M. Tamimi
A. Heather Eliassen
Publication date
04-05-2024
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Published in
European Journal of Epidemiology
Print ISSN: 0393-2990
Electronic ISSN: 1573-7284
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10654-024-01111-x