Septic shock remains a major problem in Intensive Care Unit, with high lethality and high-risk second lines treatments. In this preliminary retrospective investigation we examined plasma metabolome and clinical features in a subset of 20 patients with severe septic shock (SOFA score >8), enrolled in the multicenter Albumin Italian Outcome Sepsis study (ALBIOS, NCT00707122). Our purpose was to evaluate the changes of circulating metabolites in relation to mortality as a pilot study to be extended in a larger cohort. Patients were analyzed according to their 28-days and 90-days mortality. Metabolites were measured using a targeted mass spectrometry-based quantitative metabolomic approach that included acylcarnitines, aminoacids, biogenic amines, glycerophospholipids, sphingolipids, and sugars. Data-mining techniques were applied to evaluate the association of metabolites with mortality. Low unsaturated long-chain phosphatidylcholines and lysophosphatidylcholines species were associated with long-term survival (90-days) together with circulating kynurenine. Moreover, a decrease of these glycerophospholipids was associated to the event at 28-days and 90-days in combination with clinical variables such as cardiovascular SOFA score (28-day mortality model) or renal replacement therapy (90-day mortality model). Early changes in the plasma levels of both lipid species and kynurenine associated with mortality have potential implications for early intervention and discovering new target therapy.
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