Age-related osteoporosis is characterized by reduced bone mineralization and reduced bone strength, which increases the risk of fractures. We examined metabolic changes associated with age-related bone loss by profiling lipids and polar metabolites in tibia and femur bone tissues from young (5 months old) and old (28 months old) male C57BL/6J mice using ultra-performance liquid chromatography quadrupole-time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Partial least-squares discriminant analysis showed clear differences in metabolite levels in bone tissues of young and old mice. We identified 93 lipid species, including free fatty acids, sphingolipids, phospholipids, and glycerolipids, that were significantly altered in bone tissues of old mice. In addition, the expression of 26 polar metabolites differed significantly in bone tissues of old mice and young mice. Specifically, uremic toxin metabolite levels (p-cresyl sulfate, hippuric acid, and indoxylsulfate) were higher in bone tissues of old mice than in young mice. The increase in p-cresyl sulfate, hippuric acid, and indoxylsulfate levels were determined using targeted analysis of plasma polar extracts to determine whether these metabolites could serve as potential osteoporosis biomarkers. This study demonstrates that LC-MS-based global profiling of lipid and polar metabolites can elucidate metabolic changes that occur during age-related bone loss and identify potential biomarkers of osteoporosis.
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