01.03.2012 | Regular Article | Ausgabe 2/2012
The effect of sleep restriction and psychological load on the diurnal metabolic changes in tryptamine-related compounds in human urine
Environmental Health and Preventive Medicine
- Masayasu Minami, Hideyo Takahashi, Tsukasa Sasaki, Shun Matsumoto, Kazuhiro Sakai, Hirofumi Inagaki, Yuko Yamano, Hirotsugu Miyake
The effect of a severely stressful situation (sleep restriction and psychological load) on the diurnal changes in novel tryptamine-related compounds (hydroxydiacetyltryptamine, sulphatoxymelatonin, and dihydromelatonin) was evaluated in human subjects for 16 days.
The subjects were allowed to sleep for 5 h on days three through 12 and for 8 h on the other days. On days three through 12, the subjects were asked to perform a psychological task. The first two and the last 4 days were viewed as control days. A performance test was administered to evaluate the extent of the subjects’ fatigue. Total urine was sampled by collecting it into bottles three times a day [(1) during the sleeping period, (2) in the morning, and (3) in the afternoon]. Seven tryptamine-related compounds in urine were assayed using HPLC-fluorometry.
The urine melatonin level was high at night and low during the day. In contrast, urinary levels of hydroxydiacetyltryptamine and sulphatoxydiacetyltryptamine were low at night and high during the day. Dihydromelatonin was undetectable in urine during the sleeping period. Sleep restriction and psychological load did not affect diurnal changes in urinary melatonin, hydroxydiacetyltryptamine, sulphatoxydiacetyltryptamine, or N-acetylserotonin levels. The concentrations of hydroxymelatonin and sulphatoxymelatonin in urine did not show diurnal changes and decreased gradually during the experimental days. A principal component analysis confirmed the diurnal changes and suggested two novel metabolic pathways: (1) N-acetylserotonin to sulphtoxydiacetyltryptamine via hydroxydiacetyltryptamine, and (2) melatonin to dihydromelatonin.
Severely stressful situations did not affect diurnal changes in melatonin, hydroxydiacetyltryptamine, sulphatoxydiacetyltryptamine, or N-acetylserotonin levels in urine.