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Disease Markers
Volume 2018, Article ID 8473161, 12 pages
Research Article

Metabolomics of Hydrazine-Induced Hepatotoxicity in Rats for Discovering Potential Biomarkers

1Pharmacy Department of Beijing Chao-Yang Hospital Affiliated with Beijing Capital Medical University, Beijing, China
2Pharmacy Department of the Second Artillery General Hospital of Chinese People’s Liberation Army, Beijing, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Lihong Liu; moc.621@hllgnoh

Received 15 August 2017; Accepted 20 November 2017; Published 10 April 2018

Academic Editor: Donald H. Chace

Copyright © 2018 Zhuoling An 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.


Metabolic pathway disturbances associated with drug-induced liver injury remain unsatisfactorily characterized. Diagnostic biomarkers for hepatotoxicity have been used to minimize drug-induced liver injury and to increase the clinical safety. A metabolomics strategy using rapid-resolution liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (RRLC-MS/MS) analyses and multivariate statistics was implemented to identify potential biomarkers for hydrazine-induced hepatotoxicity. The global serum and urine metabolomics of 30 hydrazine-treated rats at 24 or 48 h postdosing and 24 healthy rats were characterized by a metabolomics approach. Multivariate statistical data analyses and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were performed to identify the most significantly altered metabolites. The 16 most significant potential biomarkers were identified to be closely related to hydrazine-induced liver injury. The combination of these biomarkers had an area under the curve (AUC) > 0.85, with 100% specificity and sensitivity, respectively. This high-quality classification group included amino acids and their derivatives, glutathione metabolites, vitamins, fatty acids, intermediates of pyrimidine metabolism, and lipids. Additionally, metabolomics pathway analyses confirmed that phenylalanine, tyrosine, and tryptophan biosynthesis as well as tyrosine metabolism had great interactions with hydrazine-induced liver injury in rats. These discriminating metabolites might be useful in understanding the pathogenesis mechanisms of liver injury and provide good prospects for drug-induced liver injury diagnosis clinically.