About clinical proteomics

Clinical proteomics

Proteomics, a sector of biochemistry, depicts the entire set of all detectable proteins in a respective sample. Proteins are the functional molecules of a cell and represent the “basis of life”. The proteome is dynamic and changing over time (other than the genome, which is generally constant), and therefore represents the actual state of an organ or an organism ("snapshot").

Application-oriented clinical proteomics focuses on the translation of knowledge from basic research to clinical use, guided by clinical needs.

Today, the technology can be successfully used for clinical diagnosis, prognosis of disease progression, monitoring and prediction of drug response, as well as identification of therapeutic targets/ drugs. For the latter, several candidates passed pre-clinical testing, and will now enter Phase 1/2 clinical trial. 

Proteomics as a key to modern medicine

Diseases are generally not associated with changes in only one protein, but with multiple proteomic alterations. A quantitative and qualitative evaluation of the proteins is necessary for obtaining comprehensive and representative knowledge.

Diseases arise at the molecular level, at the level of proteins. At this level, the decisive biochemical processes that are responsible for disease development and control take place. This diagnostic level is generally not accessible with other ‘omics technologies and can only be accessed by proteomics. 

Opportunities enabled by clinical proteomics

The knowledge of proteomic changes in pathophysiology (as biomarkers) results in a new level of defining and understanding diseases. This knowledge is the basis for prevention, diagnostics, and therapy designed to meet the individual needs of the patient: every protein may be a potential target for modern therapy. Furthermore, the prognosis of the disease progression and the general susceptibility of the human body to diseases can be predicted. That is possible due to the direct association with disease pathophysiology.

As a result of the analysis of tens of thousands of defined peptides and proteins, clinical proteome analysis reaches a level of resolution that cannot be achieved by other clinical analytic methods. 

The high content of information from these analyses enables an accurate depiction of the overall condition of the individual body.

Future opportunities of clinical proteomics

Clinical proteomic analysis will form the foundation of modern medicine, as individual therapy is only possible with exact diagnostics and tailored solutions (personalized medicine). 

Applying clinical proteome analysis results in therapeutic interventions taking place earlier, more consistently and in a more targeted manner. Diseases are detected and treated at the time of their molecular initiation, enabling the prevention of organ damage. Specifically, chronic diseases - responsible for up to 80% of health care costs - are detected timely so efficient interventions can be initiated.

In summary, it remains to be noted:

Disease prevention, diagnosis, and therapy merge through clinical proteome analysis. As a result, modern medicine will become more effective, faster and less expensive. The benefit is a longer and healthier life for patients and a reduction in the burden on the healthcare system.

Further reading

Latosinska, A., Siwy, J., Faguer, S., Beige, J., Mischak, H., & Schanstra, J. P. (2021). Value of Urine Peptides in Assessing Kidney and Cardiovascular Disease. Proteomics. Clinical applications, 15(1), e2000027.  doi.org/10.1002/prca.202000027

Frantzi, M., Mischak, H., & Latosinska, A. (2019). Clinical Proteomics on the Path Toward Implementation: First Promises Delivered. Proteomics. Clinical applications, 13(2), e1800094. doi.org/10.1002/prca.201800094

Frantzi, M., Latosinska, A., Kontostathi, G., & Mischak, H. (2018). Clinical Proteomics: Closing the Gap from Discovery to Implementation. Proteomics, 18(14), e1700463. doi.org/10.1002/pmic.201700463

Martens, D. S., Thijs, L., Latosinska, A., Trenson, S., Siwy, J., Zhang, Z. Y., Wang, C., Beige, J., Vlahou, A., Janssens, S., Mischak, H., Nawrot, T. S., Staessen, J. A., & FLEMENGHO investigators (2021). Urinary peptidomic profiles to address age-related disabilities: a prospective population study. The lancet. Healthy longevity, 2(11), e690–e703. doi.org/10.1016/S2666-7568(21)00226-9

Siwy, J., Mischak, H., & Zürbig, P. (2019). Proteomics and personalized medicine: a focus on kidney disease. Expert review of proteomics, 16(9), 773–782. doi.org/10.1080/14789450.2019.1659138

Latosinska, A., Frantzi, M., Vlahou, A., Merseburger, A. S., & Mischak, H. (2018). Clinical Proteomics for Precision Medicine: The Bladder Cancer Case. Proteomics. Clinical applications, 12(2), 10.1002/prca.201700074.  doi.org/10.1002/prca.201700074

Frantzi, M. Latosinska, A., Mokou, M., Mischak, H. & Vlahou, A. (2020). Drug repurposing in oncology. The Lancet Oncology, 21(12), e543. doi.org/10.1016/S1470-2045(20)30610-0

Mokou, M., Lygirou, V., Angelioudaki, I., Paschalidis, N., Stroggilos, R., Frantzi, M., Latosinska, A., Bamias, A., Hoffmann, M. J., Mischak, H., & Vlahou, A. (2020). A Novel Pipeline for Drug Repurposing for Bladder Cancer Based on Patients' Omics Signatures. Cancers12(12), 3519. doi.org/10.3390/cancers12123519


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