New tool paves the way for personalized medicine

In a new breakthrough for personalized medicine, scientists created a powerful tool to determine the inherent biological differences between individuals.

Scientists at Switzerland-based universitiesEPFLand ETHZ developed a new mass spectrometry technique called SWATH-MS that can define and explain metabolic differences, allowing for highly personalized treatment of disorders such as obesity, fatty liver and diabetes.

The scientists used SWATH-MS to study 2,600 different proteins from 40 mice strains, all of which stemmed from the same two ancestors. They divided the mice into two groups that were fed either a high-fat diet or a healthy, low-fat diet. Scientists charted the mice's physiological data and found that mice on the high-fat diet showed varied responses to diet and exercise, despite their similar genetic make-up.


The scientists compared the physiological data of the mice's protein information to their genetic data to better understand the role several key proteins play in metabolizing fat and producing energy.

"Like the mouse strains in this study, each patient with a disease is genetically different. The approach we used in the mouse cohort can now be applied one-for-one in research on human diseases, and particularly for personalized medicine," said Ruedi Aebersold, PhD, co-author of the study.

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