Experimental evaluation of an altered tryptophan metabolism in fibromyalgia.
ABSTRACT Fibromyalgia (FM) is a prevalent syndrome with chronic pain and a hypothesised underlying disturbance of the tryptophan (TRP) metabolism. We performed a tryptophan depletion (TD) test in 17 FM patients and 17 controls. TRP, 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), kynurenine (KYN), and Interleukin-6 (IL-6) were measured. Additionally pain perception was monitored in the FM patients. FM patients and controls exhibited a decrease of TRP and KYN during TD. 5-HIAA levels also decreased in all controls and in 11 FM patients, but showed a marked increase in 6 FM patients. IL-6 significantly increased during TD in the patients, but not in the controls. Pain perception was not affected in the FM patients. These data demonstrate an altered TRP metabolism in a subgroup of FM patients, where the TD seems to activate 5-HT metabolism and IL-6 production. Our findings may have diagnostic as well as therapeutic implications in the field of fibromyalgia.
Article: Missense mutations in the MEFV gene are associated with fibromyalgia syndrome and correlate with elevated IL-1beta plasma levels.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS), a common, chronic, widespread musculoskeletal pain disorder found in 2% of the general population and with a preponderance of 85% in females, has both genetic and environmental contributions. Patients and their parents have high plasma levels of the chemokines MCP-1 and eotaxin, providing evidence for both a genetic and an immunological/inflammatory origin for the syndrome (Zhang et al., 2008, Exp. Biol. Med. 233: 1171-1180). In a search for a candidate gene affecting inflammatory pathways, among five screened in our patient samples (100 probands with FMS and their parents), we found 10 rare and one common alleles for MEFV, a gene in which various compound heterozygous mutations lead to Familial Mediterranean Fever (FMF). A total of 2.63 megabases of genomic sequence of the MEFV gene were scanned by direct sequencing. The collection of rare missense mutations (all heterozygotes and tested in the aggregate) had a significant elevated frequency of transmission to affecteds (p = 0.0085, one-sided, exact binomial test). Our data provide evidence that rare missense variants of the MEFV gene are, collectively, associated with risk of FMS and are present in a subset of 15% of FMS patients. This subset had, on average, high levels of plasma IL-1beta (p = 0.019) compared to FMS patients without rare variants, unaffected family members with or without rare variants, and unrelated controls of unknown genotype. IL-1beta is a cytokine associated with the function of the MEFV gene and thought to be responsible for its symptoms of fever and muscle aches. Since misregulation of IL-1beta expression has been predicted for patients with mutations in the MEFV gene, we conclude that patients heterozygous for rare missense variants of this gene may be predisposed to FMS, possibly triggered by environmental factors.PLoS ONE 01/2009; 4(12):e8480. · 4.09 Impact Factor