Widening the urinary proteome

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  • Published: Dec 5, 2014
  • Author: Steve Down
  • Channels: Proteomics & Genomics / Sample Preparation / Proteomics
thumbnail image: Widening the urinary proteome

A new fractionation strategy for in urine has allowed the detection of more than 3400 proteins, with 1724 reported for the first time in this biofluid.

There is huge interest in the proteins of human urine as potential biomarkers of disease but, despite vast exploratory efforts, the extent and composition of the proteome remains unclear. About 2000 proteins have been identified to date but that total has been surpassed by a massive margin by Italian scientists who have characterised 3429 proteins using a special protocol that helps to dig out the low-abundance components.

Ultracentrifugation (to obtain vesicles), butanol extraction to eliminate pigments, and the use of combinatorial peptide ligand libraries were combined with high resolution mass spectrometry as described in Journal of Proteomics. Many of the proteins were concentrated in one or more steps, with most found in vesicles (1615), then CPLL (1488), the precipitated fraction (993) and the unbound fraction (1345).

The large number of new urinary proteins represents a unique opportunity for the study of the pathology of human diseases, especially those of the kidney and urinary tract.

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