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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 627201, 7 pages
Research Article

Monitoring the Modifications of the Vitreous Humor Metabolite Profile after Death: An Animal Model

1Department of Public Health, Clinical and Molecular Medicine, Forensic Science Unit, University of Cagliari, SS 554 Bivio per Sestu, 09042 Monserrato, Italy
2Department of Chemical and Geological Sciences, University of Cagliari, SS 554 Bivio per Sestu, 09042 Monserrato, Italy
3Department of Surgery, University of Cagliari, SS 554 Bivio per Sestu, 09042 Monserrato, Italy
4Public Health Institute, Forensic Science Unit, Catholic University, Largo Francesco Vito 1, 00165 Rome, Italy

Received 18 July 2014; Accepted 16 October 2014

Academic Editor: Michele Rechia Fighera

Copyright © 2015 Maria Francesca Rosa et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We applied a metabolomic approach to monitor the modifications occurring in goat vitreous humor (VH) metabolite composition at different times (0, 6, 12, 18, and 24 hours) after death. The 1H-NMR analysis of the VH samples was performed for the simultaneous determination of several metabolites (i.e., the metabolite profile) representative of the VH status at different times. Spectral data were analyzed by Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and by Orthogonal Projection to Latent Structures (OPLS) regression technique. PCA and OPLS suggested that different spectral regions were involved in time-related changes. The major time-related compositional changes, here detected, were the increase of lactate, hypoxanthine, alanine, total glutathione, choline/phosphocholine, creatine, and myo-inositol and the decrease of glucose and 3-hydroxybutyrate. We attempted a speculative interpretation of the biological mechanisms underlying these changes. These results show that multivariate statistical approach, based on 1H NMR metabolite profiling, is a powerful tool for detecting ongoing differences in VH composition and may be applied to investigate several physiological and pathological conditions.