Authors : Mathew B, Srinivasan K, Pradeep J, Thomas T, Murthy SK, Mandal AK
Publication Year : 2019
BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVES:
The major limiting factor in the prevention of suicide is the limited knowledge on molecular insights in individuals at risk. Identification of peripheral protein markers which can classify individuals at high-risk of suicide might aid in early diagnosis and effective medical intervention. The aim of the present study was, therefore, to analyze the differential regulation of plasma proteins in individuals with deliberate self-harm compared to controls.
Using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis coupled with matrix-assisted laser desorption-ionization mass spectrometry, differentially expressed plasma proteins were identified in study participants with deliberate self-harm compared to age- and gender-matched controls. The finding was validated using mass spectrometry-based isotope-labelled relative quantification and Western blot analysis in a new set of individuals with deliberate self-harm and controls.
The plasma proteomic analysis showed that apolipoprotein A-IV (Apo A-IV ) was downregulated by 2.63-fold (confidence interval: 1.52-4.54) in individuals with deliberate self-harm (n=10) compared to matched controls, which was consistent in mass spectrometry-based relative quantification and Western blot analysis performed in an independent set of individuals with deliberate self-harm (n=18). In addition, plasma levels of total cholesterol, esterified cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) were observed to be significantly lower individuals with deliberate self-harm compared to controls.
INTERPRETATION & CONCLUSIONS:
Apo A-IV, which plays a crucial role in the esterification of free cholesterol, was found to be downregulated with concomitantly decreased levels of HDL, esterified cholesterol and total cholesterol in individuals with deliberate self-harm compared to matched controls. The present findings might provide a link between the differential regulation of plasma proteins and the previously reported results on altered cholesterol levels in individuals with deliberate self-harm.