In our second article in our three-part series about the power of proteomics in healthcare and precision medicine, we will discuss applications for proteomics, including diagnostic tests and treatment and prevention plans. Read the first article here for a deeper overview of proteomics.
At a glance, proteomics is the study of proteins, and it builds upon the power of genomics. Genes suggest risk for disease, but proteins define a patient’s current and future health reality. Diagnostic tests that use proteomics are valuable tools for the future of precision medicine.
Diagnostic tests that measure proteins can be executed using a draw of blood, urine or other bodily fluid. The sample is then used to detect and measure protein biomarkers for diseases and conditions. Proteomics allows us to identify biological insights that can’t be observed by traditional methods but that are relevant to disease prediction. We can associate these protein biomarkers with a person’s current or future health state and determine their risk for future severe health events.
Measuring proteins can improve the accuracy of prognostic and diagnostic testing and can help uncover new treatment options for patients. With more than 20,000 proteins in the human body, there is an extensive range of applications for proteomic tests covering all aspects of human biology. Some of the most popular areas for proteomic tests are cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, kidney and liver disease, metabolic risk factors, inflammation and immune response.
Healthcare isn’t one-size-fits-all, and proteomic tests can enhance precision medicine delivered to patients. Thousands of proteins analyzed together paint a better picture of patient health than genes or single protein tests. Adverse reactions to drugs, health complications and comorbidities are determined by looking at proteins. Medications cause shifts in the proteome, and by measuring proteins we can understand whether existing treatments are adequately reducing the risk or if modifications are needed. Proteomic tests can also improve medication adherence and inform interventions.
As we further adopt proteomic tests in precision medicine, the entire healthcare ecosystem stands to benefit. Thanks to proteomic tests:
- Patients can receive more accurate diagnoses, predictions, treatments and preventions from their providers. This ensures that all care is necessary, efficient and will move the patient toward the best health outcomes.
- Providers benefit from a new, easy, quick and comprehensive diagnostic tool to aid them in better serving patients. Providers can assess how a patient’s risk changes over time and can overcome the limitations of current risk calculators, polygenic risk scores and calcium scoring methods.
- Insurance payers can ensure patients receive optimal therapies. This reduces waste and costs within the healthcare system, including reducing hospitalizations and avoiding readmissions and other costly health complications.
SomaLogic offers SomaSignal® tests, enabled by the SomaScan® Assay, which can predict patient health risks and measure responses to treatment over time. SomaLogic has worked with leading academic institutions and biobanks to apply the SomaScan Platform to over 500,000 samples, assembling the world’s largest database of protein measurements and related clinical outcomes. SomaLogic uses sophisticated machine learning and bioinformatics to transform the collection of data into quantitative risk assessments and reliable physiological, lifestyle and disease insights for patients.
For example, SomaLogic offers the first clinically available proteomics tests for cardiovascular disease. In a study published in Science Translational Medicine, the SomaScan Platform was used to create and validate a 27-protein clinical test model that accurately predicts the four-year likelihood of myocardial infarction, heart failure, stroke or death. SomaLogic’s cardiovascular risk portfolio contains multiple tests that can predict the likelihood of a cardiovascular event with 90% accuracy – higher than population-level retrospective data or existing risk score modeling. This test is important because more than 800,000 people in the United States die from CVD each year – that's one in every three deaths.
Stay tuned for more about cardiovascular disease and the power of proteomics for prediction, monitoring and prevention of this disease in our third article in this series. Learn more about proteomics and SomaLogic at somalogic.com/providers or by attending our upcoming webinar.
SomaSignal™ tests are developed and their performance characteristics determined by SomaLogic, Inc. They have neither been cleared or approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. SomaLogic operates a Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) certified, and College of American Pathologists (CAP) accredited laboratory.