September 12, 2007--
Early detection of disease is often critical to how successful
treatment can be. Therefore, the development of new methods of
diagnosis is a hot research field, where every small step is of great
importance. In an article in the latest issue of Molecular &
Cellular Proteomics, Uppsala University researchers describe a
technique that the journal regards as especially interesting.
build up the body's cells and tissues, and our knowledge of the human
genome also entails that today's scientists are aware of all of the
proteins that our body can produce. It is known that many morbid
conditions can be linked to changes in proteins, so it is important to
enhance our knowledge of what proteins bind to each other, how they
work together, and how processes are impacted by various disturbances.
In 2006 Ola Söderberg and his colleagues at the Department of Genetics
and Pathology devised a new technique, in situ PLA (in situ proximity
ligation assay), that could detect communication between proteins in
cells. These researchers have now refined the method and can now see
how proteins undergo change inside a cell.
"The method provides
a better potential to truly understand how proteins function in the
cell and can show what is wrong with a sick cell, as in cancer, for
instance. The refined method has the potential to revolutionize cancer
diagnostics, so there has been a great deal of interest in the method
from the research community," says Ola Söderberg.
is more sensitive and more reliable than other available techniques in
molecular diagnostics, and it has already started to be sold by the
Uppsala company Olink, so there are high hopes that it will soon be
used in health care.