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Advanced glycosylation end-products

Measurement of advanced glycation end-products and their role in adverse health effects.

Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are chemicals that are formed as end products in Maillard reactions. Humans are exposed to AGEs on a daily bases since Maillard reactions take place both endogenous (inside the body) and exogenous during food processing. Advanced glycation end products are associated to oxidative stress and inflammation thus to pathological conditions that are mediated through oxidative stress and inflammation. Recent findings indicate direct association of AGEs to impaired glucose tolerance. Considering the continuous exposure of the general population to those compounds and the worldwide increase in prevalence of impaired glucose tolerance and cardiovascular disease research to enable quantification of exposure levels, identify main exposure routes as well as research to elucidate the mechanisms involved in the adverse health effects are central for effective prevention.

Advanced glycation end products is a collective name to numerous divers Maillard reaction by-products. Measuring each and every one of the by-products is not feasible. However, to enable estimation of exposure levels AGEs, N-(epsilon)-carboxymethyl-lysine (CML) and N-(epsilon)-carboxyethyl-lysine (CEL) are used as markers. In our laboratory we have developed an Isotope dilution mass spectrometric based method for quantification of free and protein bound CML and CEL in food. The overall aim of the project is to understand the underlying mechanisms in the role of AGEs in adverse health effects by elucidating the role of AGEs in inflammation and to lower exposure to AGESs as way of prevention against the above named pathological conditions

The current project is therefore aiming at:

  • applying the developed method for determination of CML and CEL to analyze characterizing and quantify the AGE-levels in frequently consumed foods and identify food items that are main exposure sources.
  • modifying the newly developed method that is used for analysis of CML and CEL in food samples so that it can be applied to biological fluids like blood and urine.
  • understanding the underlying mechanism of the role of AGES in pathological conditions such as diabetes.

Results from the study will help identify main exposure routes and to understand underlying mechanisms which will help in lowering exposure levels and in planning of effective preventive measures.

Project leader: Dr E Tareke


Food for Health Science Centre
Lund University
Medicon Village
SE-223 81  Lund, Sweden

Tel +46(46)222 000 (switchboard)

VAT number: SE202100321101