Proteogenomics Research: On the Frontier of Precision Medicine

Proteogenomics Reasearch: On the Frontier of Precision Medicine The fields that we currently consider next generation molecular medicine, including Genomics, Proteomics, miRNAomics, Microbiomics, and Epigenomics all share the same foundation This foundation rests in "omics", which is an informal term used to describe the comprehensive study of the biological components of a cell at the molecular level

Take Genomics, for example Genomics is the comprehensive study of the complete set of genes, or DNA, in an organism, which we refer to as the genome Analyzing the genome of a patient's cancer can reveal information about how to best detect, diagnose, and treat the patient For example, a patient's cancer may have a DNA mutation that makes it especially sensitive to a drug Although studying a patient's DNA can provide a lot of information, it doesn't give us the whole picture

The reason is that, in addition to DNA, there are many other molecules that contribute to cancer biology, such as proteins Proteomics is the comprehensive study of the complete set of proteins in an organism which we refer to as the proteome Proteins are built from DNA You might say that DNA is the blueprint for life, and proteins are the tools that make living systems work They play a major role in the daily functions of both healthy cells and cancer cells

Analyzing a patient's cancer proteome can also provide information about how to best diagnose and treat the patient This is because proteins carry out almost all of the functions within our cells If a protein is altered a cell could begin to multiply uncontrollably, potentially leading to cancer This is why almost every clinical cancer treatment targets a protein Understanding how proteins influence cancer biology is critical to developing better diagnosis and treatment strategies, as they can add clarity to how a patient will respond to a particular treatment

In the past researchers often studied patients' cancer genomes or proteomes separately But in 2016, three research teams combined the comprehensive analysis of patients' cancer genomes and proteomes This integrated approach of Proteomics and Genomics is called Proteogenomics These studies showed that, separately, genomics and proteomics provide a partial picture of cancer biology, but studying them together produced a more complete unified picture Researchers are hopeful that proteogenomics may improve our ability to prevent, diagnose, and treat cancer at the molecular level

Proteogenomics Research: On the Frontier of Precision Medicine

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