Metabolomics strategy reveals therapeutical assessment of limonin on nonbacterial prostatitis†
Limonin has been found to possess significant anti-inflammatory properties in animal tests and with, human cells, however, its precise metabolism mechanism has not been well explored. The aim of this study was to investigate the anti-inflammatory effects of limonin in a nonbacterial prostatitis (NBP) animal model. Global metabolite profiling was performed by ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography combined with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UPLC/ESI-TOFMS) and in conjunction with multivariate data analysis and pathway analysis which were integrated to explore differentiating metabolites and clarify the mechanism of limonin against capsaicin-induced NBP. Limonin has a potential protective function revealed by the metabolic profiling of limonin-treated rats located closer to the normal group. Twenty potential biomarker candidates and several key metabolic pathways contributing to the treatment of NBP were discovered and identified. Among the pathways, the related glycine, serine and threonine metabolism, glycerophospholipid metabolism were acutely perturbed. The changes in metabolites were restored to their base-line levels after limonin treatment, which might be through regulating the perturbed pathways to the normal state. The results indicate that changed biomarkers and pathways may provide evidence and insight into limonin action mechanisms and enable us to increase research productivity toward metabolomics in therapeutical assessment and drug discovery.