PeptideManager: a peptide selection tool for targeted proteomic studies involving mixed samples from different species.
- NORLUX Neuro-Oncology Laboratory
- Proteomics of Cellular Signaling
The search for clinically useful protein biomarkers using advanced mass spectrometry approaches represents a major focus in cancer research. However, the direct analysis of human samples may be challenging due to limited availability, the absence of appropriate control samples, or the large background variability observed in patient material. As an alternative approach, human tumors orthotopically implanted into a different species (xenografts) are clinically relevant models that have proven their utility in pre-clinical research. Patient derived xenografts for glioblastoma have been extensively characterized in our laboratory and have been shown to retain the characteristics of the parental tumor at the phenotypic and genetic level. Such models were also found to adequately mimic the behavior and treatment response of human tumors. The reproducibility of such xenograft models, the possibility to identify their host background and perform tumor-host interaction studies, are major advantages over the direct analysis of human samples. At the proteome level, the analysis of xenograft samples is challenged by the presence of proteins from two different species which, depending on tumor size, type or location, often appear at variable ratios. Any proteomics approach aimed at quantifying proteins within such samples must consider the identification of species specific peptides in order to avoid biases introduced by the host proteome. Here, we present an in-house methodology and tool developed to select peptides used as surrogates for protein candidates from a defined proteome (e.g., human) in a host proteome background (e.g., mouse, rat) suited for a mass spectrometry analysis. The tools presented here are applicable to any species specific proteome, provided a protein database is available. By linking the information from both proteomes, PeptideManager significantly facilitates and expedites the selection of peptides used as surrogates to analyze proteins of interest.