Yale researchers have devised a technique for expressing activated phosphoproteins in Escherichia coli, using it to generate phosphorylated versions of the protein MEK1, a key molecule in cell proliferation, development, differentiation, and oncogenesis.
According to Yale assistant professor Jesse Rinehart, one of the leaders of the study – which was published in Science – the technique could prove an important source of reagents for phosphoproteomic research and provides an early glimpse of synthetic biology’s potential to aid proteomics more generally.
The new “Clinical Proteomic Tumor Analysis Consortium” (CPTAC) program will add to NCI’s ongoing initiatives in molecular cancer and genomics, such as The Cancer Genome Atlas, by seeking to define proteins translated from cancer genomes so that they may enable researchers to link genotype to proteotype and phenotype.
The partners include a Cancer Proteomic Center at Washington University, St. Louis, the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and Boise State University; a Center for Application of Advanced Clinical Proteomic Technologies for Cancer at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory; a center for Proteo-Genomic Discovery and Prioritization and Verification of Cancer Biomarkers at The Broad Institute and at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center; and two Proteome Characterization Centers, one at Johns Hopkins University and one at Vanderbilt University.
The CPTAC network will pursue four central objectives: identifying and characterizing the proteins from tumor and normal tissue specimens; integrating genomic and proteomic data from analysis of common cancer biospecimens; development of assays for proteins that may be potential biomarkers; and performing testing of verification assays in relevant cohorts of biospecimens.
The network will aim to integrate genomics and proteomics efforts to detect and quantify protein products that correspond to splice variants, mutations, insertions, deletions, rearrangements, copy number aberrations, or epigenomic changes.
The researchers also will use a “mapping proteome to genome” approach to generate an inventory of the detectable proteins in a tumor.
NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Scientists involved in the Human Protein Atlas are about halfway through their effort to generate and compile data on all known human proteins, members of the team announced recently.
As of mid-November, the group of investigators from Sweden, South Korea, China, and India had reportedly characterized about 10,000 of the 20,000 predicted proteins in the human body. Using genetic data as a guide, the researchers are continuing to put together localization, functional, and other proteomic data for the resource, which they expect to finish in 2015.
The Human Protein Atlas relies on a high-throughput, antibody-based proteomics approach in which genetic sequence information is used to find and develop antibodies against specific protein epitope signature tags.
The project, which is led by researchers at the Royal Institute in Stockholm, Uppsala University, and Lab Surgpath in Mumbai, receives funding from the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation.
NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Cancer Institute wants to push forward protein-focused cancer research technologies by investing between $75 million and $120 million in centers that will conduct biomarker discovery, verification, and new cancer proteomics studies.
The Proteome Characterization Centers (PCC) grants program is the second phase in NCI’s Clinical Proteomic Technologies for Cancer (CPTC) initiative, which was started four years ago to develop technologies for identifying and quantifying proteins that could be useful as cancer biomarkers.
Phase one of the CPTC program established five multidisciplinary centers that showed they could be effective in addressing analytical variability problems in proteomics. Now, the second phase will build a network of centers that will target biomarkers and will aim to improve tools for protein detection, identification, and quantification.
The PCCs will use discovery units and verification units to implement the two-step process in the biomarker development pipeline, and the findings from these studies will be made public through a central data center.
“[We] want to develop a much greater understanding of cancer at the molecular level,” Chris Kinsinger of NCI’s Office of Cancer Clinical Proteomics Research told GenomeWeb Daily News this week.