The blood is a complex mixture proteins with over 250 making up the healthy blood proteome. The precise composition of the blood is therefore a marker of good health and evolves as we age. During illness the composition of the blood changes marking a change in the underlying physiology of the body – a complex system. We have invented a new technology for screening all components of the blood simultaneously with only dilution as the only sample preparation. The array reader technology is being commercialised by the University Spin-out company Attomarker Ltd.
We are currently exploring projects looking carefully at changes in blood composition including:
- Change in protein composition during the acute phase response of the body to infection and surgical insult.
- Profiling the acute phase response to monitor recovery of patients following major abdominal surgery.
- Diagnosis of acute appendicitis on admission by monitoring components of the acute phase.
- Allergy and the evolution of allergy, especially food allergy.
- Peanut Allergy – the discovery of an unknown factor in the blood of peanut allergy sufferers.
- Profiling the response of vaccines to establish their efficacy.
- Design of new vaccines using nanoparticles to present the immunogens.
- Dignosis of autoimmue diseases.
Aims and Objectives
The projects aim to study the blood proteome as a series of markers that report on the healthy physiology and the body’s response to challenges, wounds, operations that is the acute phase, The acute phase may be considered as a system which with a response that evolves in time. Does the response provide information about the problem causing the changes? Do we respond differently to different illnesses and infections? Can we use the acute phase to profile an healthy recovery? All of these questions require accurate and timely understanding of the blood proteome.