Ultra-high-sensitivity proteomics in cancer detection
6 June 2005
Professor Jasminka Godovac-Zimmerman and Dr Oliver Kleiner of the Rayne Institute have collaborated with cosmophysicist Dr Andrzej Drukier of Biotraces Inc.
Professor Godovac-Zimmermann said: "MPD offers solutions to several crucial problems in proteomics. First, thousand-fold improvements in sensitivity allows for the detection of less abundant proteins, and also reduces the amounts of tissue or cell samples needed for proteomics analyses. Second, better quantitation of proteins improves understanding of complex biological networks in cells and tissues. Third, MPD allows analysis of whole proteins to identify exactly which protein variants are involved in diseases such as cancer. We expect that MPD will become a very widely used method."
In collaboration with Mr Richard Sainsbury from the UCL Department of Surgery, the team measured different blood serum proteins from breast cancer patients with the new, MPD-enabled immunoassay methods. For the first time, the MPD technology allowed researchers to measure very low abundance serum proteins involved in typical responses to cancers such as changes in immune responses and in formation of new blood vessels for all the patients.
Pilot studies show that using blood samples, breast cancer and several
other types of epithelial cancers (ovarian, prostate, melanoma) can be
detected with much better sensitivity and specificity. This may allow
new, less intrusive, safer and much less expensive approaches for the
early diagnosis of cancer, for distinguishing malignant and benign
cancers, and for monitoring cancer therapy. The initial results were
presented at the 27th Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium and a
description of the method will appear in the forthcoming issue of Proteomics.
Image: Ultra-high-sensitivity MPD detection of Hela cells proteins.