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New biomarker method could increase the number of diagnostic tests for cancer
Date:6/29/2009

network study demonstrates that new applications of existing proteomic techniques show promise of greater accuracy. The findings suggest that two technologies -- multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) coupled with stable isotope dilution mass spectrometry (SID-MS), which is a technique used by protein scientists to measure the abundance of a particular protein in a sample -- may be suitable for use in preclinical studies to rapidly screen large numbers of candidate protein biomarkers in the hundreds of patient samples necessary for verification.

MRM provides a rapid way to determine whether a candidate biomarker is detectable in blood. This is critically important for clinical use, as well as in being able to assess whether changes in a candidate biomarker correspond with the presence or stage of a disease. A sophisticated type of mass spectrometry, MRM is designed for obtaining the maximum sensitivity for quantifying target compounds in patient samples.

"Our work demonstrates that this technology has the potential to transform how candidate protein biomarkers are evaluated. SID-MRM-MS, combined with complementary techniques, could provide the critical filter to assess protein candidate performance without the immediate need for other detection or quantification tests. This would provide the critical missing component for a systematic biomarker pipeline that bridges discovery and clinical validation," said senior author Steven Carr, Ph.D., director of the Proteomics Platform at the Broad Institute. "This is an important step forward for the field of proteomics, one that would not have been possible without the collaborative efforts of the CPTAC partners."

In this study, the researchers demonstrated that MRM is highly sensitive and specific, important characteristics that ensure the detection of real disease-specific biomarkers. In addition, using common samples and standardized protocols, they found that MRM is highly reproducible across
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Contact: Elizabeth Fernandez
efernandez@pubaff.ucsf.edu
415-476-2557
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert

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