2nd Annual Reporting Meeting

The 2nd annual Affinomics reporting meeting was held at Hotel Ponte Sisto, Rome on April 13th 2012, chaired by Mike Taussig (BBT). The meeting was started with a presentation by Professor Ulf Landegren (UU) outlining some of the challenges and opportunities facing the Affinomics project. The presentation was followed by four sessions of 10 minute presentations of deliverables and activities conducted within the work packages.

In his opening speech Ulf Landegren described how affinity-based methods can provide detailed knowledge about the presence and concentration of proteins in blood plasma. A key deliverable of the AFFINOMICS project is to produce binders with specificity for biomarkers which may be used for early diagnosis and point of care monitoring of patients.

The amount of proteins available as biomarkers in blood plasma seem to be distributed by a power law, which means that every 10-fold increase in detection sensitivity greatly increases the number of available targets. For richly expressed proteins mass spectometry provides a cost-efficient method of detection. But the vast majority of biomarkers require affinity based methods where a binder, or for enhanced specificity a combination of binders, is used to create a measurable response when bound to the target protein (see attached image and article).

Production of antibodies and other binders is a multistage process, beginning with the production of pure target proteins and culminating in full-scale production of binders after careful quality control and characterisation. In the AFFINOMICS project this process is divided into work packages where European experts in each area cooperate to optimise the production of binders of value to research.

During the meeting members of each work package delivered 10 minute presentations of their current status and completed deliverables. Select publications from the reporting meeting can also be viewed and downloaded from this page.

Ulf Landegren: Coordinator Introduction, article

Work package 1: Generation of protein and peptide antigens

Work package 2 and 4: Production of binders

Work package 7: Bioinformatics and databases

Work package 3, 5 and 6: Binder analysis and applications

Concluding remarks by Mike Taussig