Mass Spectrometry and Biomarkers Development
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One of the major goals of twenty-first century medicine is the identification of biomarkers for the earliest possible stages of disease involvement so that prompt clinical intervention can limit damage, reverse pathological change, and ideally effect a complete cure. New developments in the analytical field of mass spectrometry are providing clinicians and translational scientists with even more powerful tools for the discovery of novel biomarkers. A key requirement for the succesful application of mass spectrometric approaches to biomarker discovery is a clear reference standard for the ‘normal’ human proteome, and a better understanding of the sources and extent of ‘normal’ variability in human plasma proteins. This special issue of Disease Markers includes examples of biomarker discovery efforts directed at breast and prostate cancers, diabetes mellitus, and heart disease.