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Pathol Res Pract. 2004;200(2):119-27.

Expression and functional proteomics studies in colorectal cancer.

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Department of Surgery, University of Magdeburg, Leipziger Strasse 44, 39120 Magdeburg, Germany.


Cell dysfunction results from multiple rather than from single gene interactions in the majority of colorectal cancers (CRC). Proteins, not mRNA, are the functional molecules in the cell, and the relationship between gene expression measured at the mRNA level and the corresponding protein level is not linear. Current proteomics tools allow for the determination of post-translational modifications, and hence the presence of protein isoforms--some of them being disease-relevant. Thus, proteomics approaches are a welcome complement to traditional genetic approaches. In CRC, expression proteomics studies were carried out with colorectal cell lines, whole tissue biopsies, and purified epithelial cells. For CRC, two-dimensional electrophoresis reference maps, protein, and membrane protein databases are available on the internet. Functional proteomics studies have been performed to better understand signaling pathways, to characterize the molecular targets of novel drugs, and to identify tumor-associated antigens in CRC. The increasing use of proteomics technologies, when addressing clinical problems, will accelerate the evolution towards personalized medicine in CRC.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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