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Proteomics. 2015 Sep;15(18):3193-208. doi: 10.1002/pmic.201500004. Epub 2015 Jul 16.

Applications of targeted proteomics in systems biology and translational medicine.

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Department of Biology, Institute of Molecular Systems Biology, Eidgenossische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.
Computational Biology Center, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, USA.
Department of Physiology, Biophysics and Systems Biology, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY, USA.
Faculty of Science, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.


Biological systems are composed of numerous components of which proteins are of particularly high functional significance. Network models are useful abstractions for studying these components in context. Network representations display molecules as nodes and their interactions as edges. Because they are difficult to directly measure, functional edges are frequently inferred from suitably structured datasets consisting of the accurate and consistent quantification of network nodes under a multitude of perturbed conditions. For the precise quantification of a finite list of proteins across a wide range of samples, targeted proteomics exemplified by selected/multiple reaction monitoring (SRM, MRM) mass spectrometry has proven useful and has been applied to a variety of questions in systems biology and clinical studies. Here, we survey the literature of studies using SRM-MS in systems biology and clinical proteomics. Systems biology studies frequently examine fundamental questions in network biology, whereas clinical studies frequently focus on biomarker discovery and validation in a variety of diseases including cardiovascular disease and cancer. Targeted proteomics promises to advance our understanding of biological networks and the phenotypic significance of specific network states and to advance biomarkers into clinical use.


Clinical proteomics; Multiple reaction monitoring; Selected reaction monitoring; Systems biology; Targeted proteomics

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