Proteomics

Proteomics is the large-scale study of proteins produced in a given organism or cellular system.  By observing changes in expression, co-translational and post-translational modifications, and interactions, we can gain a better understanding of an organism’s cellular processes.

Taking advantage of advances in mass spectrometry (mass accuracy, sensitivity, resolution), we are able to identify the protein(s) in a given sample, whether it be a complex mixture or a highly purified sample.

To do this, we employ a “Bottom-up” approach, whereby protein samples are enzymatically digested (primarily by Trypsin) into smaller peptides.  These peptides are then chromatographically separated and detected by MS.  The peptides are further fragmented in a tandem mass spectrometry experiment and the resulting data is later matched against a protein sequence database.

 proteomics-overview
 

Diagram of “Bottom-up” workflow.
(Click on image for expanded view)