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The new method offers a wide range of possibilities for researching microbiota at new functional levels.




A research group at the Turku Bioscience Center in Finland has developed a new method for studying the function of microbiota through metaproteomics. The new method offers a wide range of possibilities for researching microbiota at new functional levels. The characterization of the function of the gut microbiota is central to the study of human health and disease, as well as the prediction, prevention and treatment of disease. Previous studies have focused primarily on cataloging the composition of the microbiota, but little is known about the function of the human gut microbiota.

Protein is essential for important functions of the body. They control most cell functions and allow complex interactions between cells and their environment. Therefore, protein research can provide a wide range of information about the various functions of cells. Protein analysis is widely used in medical research, including profiling of the gut microbiota.

The important role of the gut microbiota on human health and their role in various diseases have been recognized in recently published studies. A research group at the University of Turku, led by Professor Laura Elo, has developed a new mass spectrometry-based method that enables extensive study of protein levels in complex microflora samples.

Until recently, microbiota research has focused on finding microorganisms present in samples, but it has been difficult to analyze the function of microbiota. However, recent technological advances have also made it possible to dig deeper into functionality. Research at the protein level in microbiota samples is one such field of study that has received much attention, enabling a broader understanding of the function and dynamics of microbiota. “

Professor Laura Elo, University of Turku

Recently developed methods utilize state-of-the-art mass spectrometry techniques and advanced computational methods, significantly improving the coverage and reproducibility of results, in contrast to previous methods.

“The new method we have developed to analyze complex protein data produces more reliable results than the previous method,” says postdoctoral fellow Sami Pietilla.

“Currently used research methods typically analyze only the most abundant proteins, resulting in variability from analysis to analysis. The new method systematically analyzes the sample and does not cause this type of variation. It produces reliable results, “continues Pietilä.

The calculation method is published as open source software and is freely accessible to the research community.

“It is very important to make this newly developed method available to all researchers as an easy-to-use application, and we are ready to work on further development and maintenance of this tool,” said Postdoc. Suomi Tomi adds.


Journal reference:

Pietilä, S., et al. (2022) Introduction of non-target data-independent acquisition for metaproteomics of complex microbial samples. ISME communication..




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