Age related profiles of free amino acids in human skeletal muscle.

: Sarcopenia describes the involuntary decline in muscle mass with aging, coupled with fatigue, and loss of force and function. We investigated 113 human muscle biopsy specimens obtained from patients with neuromuscular diseases and controls. We measured 21 amino acids in these muscle biopsies. Age emerged as a significant negative predictor of cytosolic concentration ratio of glutamine to total branched chain amino acids and of glutamine to total aromatic amino acids using stepwise multiple linear regression analysis. This pattern of alteration corresponds well to documented alterations in skeletal muscle of critically ill patients and after immobilization. Additionally, in myositis, citrulline was significantly elevated, while glutamate, lysine and taurine were significantly reduced. Furthermore, in sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (sALS) the total aromatic amino acids, arginine, glutamate, threonine, and tyrosine were significantly elevated. This study provides evidence, that alteration of glutamine is correlated to aging and might reflect increased proteolysis in aged and diseased human skeletal muscle.