Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Plasma Biomarkers


The availability and easy collection of plasma, which contains a vast variety of protein classes, make it a very attractive bio-fluid for the discovery and identification of protein biomarkers. In addition to availability, the human circulatory system is responsible for transporting materials throughout the entire body, with plasma making up approximately half of all blood components.

Plasma biomarkers can identify disease conditions as well as monitor progression and response to therapy. In collaboration with BSI, we are manufacturing what we consider the ultimate multi-variate biomarker discovery and screening platform for plasma based assays. Although the product is currently for research use, the microarray platform is designed with clinical goals in mind for ease of use, affordability and accuracy. Arrayit and BSI understand that standards and ease of use must exist for routine diagnostics use. A reproducible and standardized work flow is provided by a mature and well characterized microarray platform. Biotinlylated plasma is used to react the microarray, making the sample preparation and execution of the microarray much easier and much less expensive than using gene expression microarrays that measure the amount of RNA in a cell.

PlasmaScan is the only microarray that contains mAbs raised exclusively against NATIVE human plasma proteins. Raising antibodies against native proteins ensures that they recognize naturally occurring post-translational modifications and folding to allow the correct detection of glycosylation and other modifications that are known to be highly antigenic. The antibodies have been selected based solely on strict technical criteria in an open, hypothesis-free manner. They are guaranteed to be non-redundant, each identifying a unique epitope and present in human plasma. The antibodies on the microarray are not based on intracellular antigens.

In the current quantitative immunoassay, an 80 antibody panel allows variations in specific antibodies or antibody binding patterns to be identified. PlasmaScan provides data indicative of a response to disease, drugs, and the environment. By comparing samples of experimental subjects with controls, relevant biomarker patterns will emerge. These patterns are critical to applications such as drug safety and efficacy, disease diagnosis, and disease modeling.

For more information about PlasmScan, please contact me; todd@arrayit.com