Levels of key enzymes of methionine-homocysteine metabolism in preeclampsia.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the role of key enzymes in the methionine-homocysteine metabolism (MHM) in the physiopathology of preeclampsia (PE). METHODS: Plasma and placenta from pregnant women (32 controls and 16 PE patients) were analyzed after informed consent. Protein was quantified by western blot. RNA was obtained with RNA purification kit and was quantified by reverse transcritase followed by real-time PCR (RT-qPCR). Identification of the C677T and A1298C methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and A2756G methionine synthase (MTR) SNP was performed using PCR followed by a high-resolution melting (HRM) analysis. S-adenosyl methionine (SAM) and S-adenosyl homocysteine (SAH) were measured in plasma using high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC/MS/MS). The SNP association analysis was carried out using Fisher's exact test. Statistical analysis was performed using a Mann-Whitney test. RESULTS: RNA expression of MTHFR and MTR was significantly higher in patients with PE as compared with controls. Protein, SAM, and SAH levels showed no significant difference between preeclamptic patients and controls. No statistical differences between controls and PE patients were observed with the different SNPs studied. CONCLUSION: The RNA expression of MTHFR and MTR is elevated in placentas of PE patients, highlighting a potential compensation mechanism of the methionine-homocysteine metabolism in the physiopathology of this disease.