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News

IRCM selects Thermo Scientific’s LTQ Orbitrap Mass Spectrometer to carry out proteomics research

Thermo Fisher Scientific Mass Spectrometry : 13 February, 2008  (New Product)
Thermo Fisher Scientific’s award-winning LTQ Orbitrap linear ion trap mass spectrometer has been chosen by the Institut de Recherches Cliniques de Montreal (IRCM) for use in a new proteomics research approach that could impact the current understanding of the human proteome.
The Thermo Scientific LTQ Orbitrap will play a major role in IRCM's systematic analysis of human protein interaction networks, which has significant implications in the prevention and treatment of disease.

IRCM, founded in 1967, is a non-profit organization devoted to studying the causes of disease, developing new diagnostic procedures and discovering preventive and therapeutic approaches that help to enhance quality of life.

A significant part of the organization's research focuses on proteomics.

Defining the maps of protein interactions that regulate cell growth, differentiation and disease progression is the overall goal of the Human Proteotheque Initiative (HuPI), a project conducted by Dr Benoit Coulombe, his research team at IRCM and his collaborators in various universities and research centres. These ‘HuPI-Maps’ will be made publicly available as an atlas describing some fundamental human molecular networks.

The atlas should become a valuable resource for scientists interested in basic biological and biomedical research because enzymes and other proteins carry most of the biological functions required for cell growth and differentiation. Central to the HuPI project is its experimental platform, including the Thermo Scientific LTQ Orbitrap mass spectrometer, which ultimately generates maps of protein interaction networks.

The information can potentially lead to future ground-breaking discoveries of new molecular tools for the prevention and treatment of disease. By characterising protein networks associated with a particular disease, scientists believe they can produce multi-parameter descriptions needed to more realistically and reliably address issues such as the cause, the diagnose and, eventually, the cure of this disease. Critical to this procedure is definitive protein characterisation, which is only possible with the high-resolution, high-mass accuracy MS/MS performance offered by the Thermo Scientific LTQ Orbitrap hybrid system.

'What is most important is to develop a highly reliable and efficient discovery pipeline that generates interaction maps that are both as complete and as accurate as possible,' Dr Coulombe said. 'The specificity of our procedure to identify functionally relevant interaction partners is spectacular. The LTQ Orbitrap has definitely enabled us to make discoveries that have previously been impossible.'

'This is a great example of how Thermo Scientific instrumentation is being used in critical research applications that have a real impact on human life,' commented Iain Mylchreest vice president and general manager, Life Sciences Mass Spectrometry, Thermo Fisher. 'Thermo Fisher is proud to support the HuPI initiative as it is extremely important and timely to the field of system biology.'
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