Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Role for proteomics in identifying hematologic malignancies

Scientists have identified a set of biomarkers that could help clinicians identify a group of hematologic malignancies known as myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), which affect approximately 300,000 individuals worldwide and often progress to acute myeloid leukemia.

Reported in the advance issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (which appears on-line the week of January 8) the findings point to a possible new diagnostic method for these malignancies, which occur when blood cells remain in an immature stage within the bone marrow and never sufficiently develop into the mature cells necessary for proper hematologic functioning. The study was led by researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Heinrich Heine University in Duesseldorf, Germany.

"Currently, a bone marrow biopsy is the only definitive means available to diagnose MDS," explains senior author Towia Libermann, PhD, Director of the Genomics Center at BIDMC and director of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Cancer Proteomics Core. "And since this group of malignancies primarily affects elderly patients, such a procedure is particularly arduous and sometimes impossible."

Therefore, first author Manuel Aivado, MD, PhD, a member of the Libermann laboratory and Lecturer in Medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS), devised a clinical study to test whether serum proteomic profiling might be used to identify biomarkers for MDS.

The large-scale study of proteins -- including their expression, modification, composition, structure and function -- the field of proteomics is proving instrumental in the identification of molecular biomarkers, such as those that indicate a particular disease, according to Libermann, who is also Associate Professor of Medicine at HMS.

Aivado and Libermann used a combination of two technologies -- protein fractionation and mass spectrometry – to create proteome profiles from the serum of 218 patients (representing clinical trial participants from both the MDS Study Group in Duesseldorf and from BIDMC). Through these profiles, the investigators were able to successfully distinguish between cases of MDS, healthy control subjects and cases of non-MDS-related cytopenias (blood cell disorders).

"Rather than uncovering a single biomarker, we were able to identify a protein signature [or spectrum], which reproducibly identified MDS patients among three separate and distinct patient cohorts," explains Libermann. "Since many patients with autoimmune disorders are treated with cytotoxic drugs such as azathioprine or methotrexate, they become cytopenic and may be suspected of having MDS. By using this new profile, the need for bone marrow biopsies might also be reduced among this patient population."

In the second part of the study, the authors identified two separate chemokines – CXCL4 and CXCL7 – the first such molecular biomarkers for advanced MDS.

"Proteomic profiling, using in-depth mass spectrometry, follows in the footsteps of genomics and represents a critical next step in understanding the pathophysiology of diseases," says Libermann. "This study demonstrated for the first time that proteomic profiling can be used for biomarker discovery and diagnostic evaluation of hematologic malignancies, an important step in refining the diagnosis and, eventually, the treatment of this devastating malignancy."

Bonnie Prescott | EurekAlert!
Further information:

Further reports about: Biomarker Libermann MDS hematologic malignancies proteomic

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration
25.10.2016 | eLife

nachricht Phenotype at the push of a button
25.10.2016 | Institut für Pflanzenbiochemie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Greater Range and Longer Lifetime

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VDI presents International Bionic Award of the Schauenburg Foundation

26.10.2016 | Awards Funding

3-D-printed magnets

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

More VideoLinks >>>