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Curr Opin Mol Ther. 2004 Jun;6(3):265-72.

Metabonomics: systems biology in pharmaceutical research and development.

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Imperial College London, Biological Chemistry, Biomedical Sciences Division, Faculty of Medicine, Sir Alexander Fleming Building, South Kensington, London SW7 2AZ, UK.


Metabonomics uses a combination of data-rich analytical chemical methods such as nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and mass spectrometry together with chemometrics for profiling metabolism and interpreting metabolic fingerprints in complex biological systems. The methods have been applied in many areas of relevance to pharmaceutical research and development, including drug safety assessment, characterization of genetically modified animal models of disease, diagnosis of human disease, understanding physiological variation and drug therapy monitoring. As well as providing a novel means of sample classification and effect evaluation, the approach can lead to identification of combinations of biomarkers for those effects. These attributes mean that metabonomics will be integral in the drive towards personalized healthcare.

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