Design, Setting, and Patients: PPGL tumor specimens from 233 patients, including 45 with SDHx mutations, were provided from eight tertiary referral centers for mass spectrometric analyses of Krebs cycle metabolites.
Context: Mutations of succinate dehydrogenase A/B/C/D genes (SDHx) increase susceptibility to development of pheochromocytomas and paragangliomas (PPGLs), with particularly high rates of malignancy associated with SDHB mutations.
Objective: We assessed whether altered succinate dehydrogenase product-precursor relationships, manifested by differences in tumor ratios of succinate to fumarate or other metabolites, might aid in identifying and stratifying patients with SDHx mutations.
Main Outcome Measure: Diagnostic performance of the succinate:fumarate ratio for identification of pathogenic SDHx mutations.
Results: SDH-deficient PPGLs were characterized by 25-fold higher succinate and 80% lower fumarate, cis-aconitate, and isocitrate tissue levels than PPGLs without SDHx mutations. Receiveroperating characteristic curves for use of ratios of succinate to fumarate or to cis-aconitate and isocitrate to identify SDHx mutations indicated areas under curves of 0.94 to 0.96; an optimal cut-off of 97.7 for the succinate:fumarate ratio provided a diagnostic sensitivity of 93% at a specificityof 97% toidentify SDHX-mutated PPGLs. Succinate:fumarate ratios were higher in both SDHB-mutated and metastatic tumors than in those due to SDHD/C mutations or without metastases.
Conclusions: Mass spectrometric-based measurements of ratios of succinate:fumarate and other metabolites in PPGLs offer a useful method to identify patients for testing of SDHx mutations, with additional utility to quantitatively assess functionality of mutations and metabolic factors responsible for malignant risk.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism