The current status of clinical proteomics and the use of MRM and MRM3 for biomarker validation

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The transfer of biomarkers from the discovery field to clinical use is still, despite progress, on a road filled with pitfalls. Since the emergence of proteomics, thousands of putative biomarkers have been published, often with overlapping diagnostic capacities. The strengthening of the robustness of discovery technologies, particularly in mass spectrometry, has been followed by intense discussions on establishing well-defined evaluation procedures for the identified targets to ultimately allow the clinical validation and then the clinical use of some of these biomarkers. Some of the obstacles to the evaluation process have been the lack of the availability of quick and easy-to-develop, easy-to-use, robust, specific and sensitive alternative quantitative methods when immunoaffinity-based tests are unavailable. Multiple reaction monitoring (MRM; also called selected reaction monitoring) is currently proving its capabilities as a complementary or alternative technique to ELISA for large biomarker panel evaluation. Here, we present how MRM3 can overcome the lack of specificity and sensitivity often encountered by MRM when tracking minor proteins diluted by complex biological matrices.

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