In a significant scientific advance, researchers at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have identified or confirmed 490 proteins in human blood serum — nearly doubling the number of known serum proteins, according to a paper accepted for publication in the December issue of Molecular and Cellular Proteomics.
Using liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry instrumentation, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory scientists identified and characterized nearly twice as many proteins in blood serum than previously noted, which provides a greater library of proteins to study for potential use in disease diagnosis.
“We have performed the most extensive identification of proteins in serum to date,” said Joel Pounds, corresponding author and a PNNL staff scientist. “We studied blood serum because it holds clues to all the major processes in our bodies. We need to know what proteins exist in that serum to know how they might be used to predict disease susceptibility, monitor disease progression or diagnose disease.”
These clues include proteins that “leak” from dead and dying cells, and proteins secreted into blood or released from tumors. Identifying these proteins allows scientists to conduct additional studies to define each protein’s functional role in cells and the body.
Staci Maloof | EurekAlert!
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