The human protein atlas blog
Affinity proteomics for plasma biomarker screening
In a recent study, published in Blood, researchers have used affinity reagents from the Human Protein Atlas project to analyze plasma samples to identify candidate protein markers associated with risk of venous thromboembolism.
Venous thromboembolism is the third most common cardiovascular disease and a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. Complex interactions between genetic, environmental and acquired risk factors underlie disease development. The first step in the process of developing clinically applicable predictive tools is the identification of novel markers that associate with the disease. In plasma, the integrated effects of genetic, environmental and acquired factors that influence the risk of thrombosis are reflected in the protein profile. Directly studying the human plasma proteome is a strategy to identify novel biomarkers that associate with venous thromboembolism.
The development of high throughput technologies has opened up new possibilities for extensive plasma protein profiling. Affinity proteomics, using suspension bead arrays built with antibodies from the Human Proteome Atlas, has been used to successfully identify novel candidate biomarkers for various diseases, such as gastrointestinal cancer, osteoporosis and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Here, with the aim of identifying plasma protein biomarkers for venous thromboembolism, the researchers have conducted the first affinity plasma proteomic profiling in two different venous thromboembolism case- control studies. They have screened samples from a Swedish cohort of 89 venous thromboembolism cases and 88 controls for over 400 selected protein candidates, followed by a replication phase in a French cohort of 603 venous thromboembolism cases and 597 controls.
To conclude, the researchers present the first application of affinity proteomics for large-scale venous thromboembolism plasma biomarker screening, identify PDGFB as a novel venous thromboembolism-associated plasma protein and present a panel of 26 additional proteins of interest worthy of further exploration. Considering the recent availability of affinity reagents of near-proteome coverage in the Human Protein Atlas, this pioneering work demonstrates the feasibility of proteome wide screenings for novel biomarkers for venous thromboembolism.
Learn more about PDGFB in the Human Protein Atlas.
Frida Henningson Johnson