CSF/plasma ratios of amino acids: Reference data and transports in children

Tomoyuki Akiyama, Katsuhiro Kobayashi, Akihito Higashikage, Junko Sato, Harumi Yoshinaga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: We intended to investigate the effects of age, gender, and medications on amino acid cerebrospinal fluid (CSF)/plasma ratios in children, and to determine whether amino acid transports across the blood-CSF barrier in children differ from those in adults. Patients and methods: Amino acid concentrations measured by ion-exchange high-performance liquid chromatography were used (CSF from 99 children, simultaneously collected plasma from 76 children). Influence of age, gender, and medications on the amino acid CSF concentrations and CSF/plasma ratios were analyzed by linear multiple regression. Interactions of amino acid transports were analyzed by correlation analysis of CSF/plasma ratios. Results: CSF/plasma ratios of serine, valine, histidine, and arginine were higher in younger children. The glutamate CSF/plasma ratio was higher in older children. Serine, alanine, threonine, valine, and histidine CSF/plasma ratios were lower in females. Glutamine, methionine, tyrosine, and phenylalanine CSF/plasma ratios were elevated with valproate therapy. Serine, threonine, valine, leucine, and tyrosine CSF/plasma ratios were lower with clobazam therapy. The asparagine CSF/plasma ratio was elevated with pyridoxal phosphate therapy. Transports of most essential neutral amino acids interacted with each other, as did neutral amino acids with low molecular weights. Cationic amino acids interacted with each other and some essential neutral amino acids. Acidic amino acids had no interactions with other amino acids. Conclusions: Age, gender, and anti-epileptic drugs affect amino acid CSF/plasma ratios in children. Transport interactions between amino acids in children showed no remarkable difference from those of adults and generally followed the substrate specificities of multiple amino acid transport systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-9
Number of pages7
JournalBrain and Development
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014


  • Blood-CSF barrier
  • Blood-brain barrier
  • Reference values
  • Transport systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology


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