ASMS in Review: Proteomics and Posters Galore

The Sage Science team headed back to our home base of Beverly, Mass., after four terrific days at the ASMS conference in Baltimore. The scientific content of the show was so good that we didn’t even mind enduring the heat wave that engulfed the city.

We spent a great deal of time absorbing the hundreds of posters presented during the meeting. There were some really impressive scientific efforts, ranging from the very large — such as cataloging the human proteome — to the very small, including nanomaterials.

A poster that caught our interest came from scientists at the Technical University of Munich and other organizations. It described Proteomics DB, a public database containing more than 90 percent of human proteins. (For more in-depth info, check out this article from The Scientist.) This draft of the human proteome, including novel proteins from supposedly noncoding portions of the genome, was generated by compiling existing mass spec libraries along with newly created libraries based on dozens of tissue types, sera, and cell lines. We are real fans of the concept of creating these comprehensive databases, and are proud that building a similar resource for E. coli was the first external use of our SageELF tool.

Another poster highlighted work from the University of Texas and MD Anderson, which demonstrated the use of mass spec together with RNA-seq to get a multidimensional view of cancer stem cells. And in separate work similar to the SDS removal tool we saw earlier in the week, scientists from Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia are developing an interesting technology using plastic columns to precipitate proteins on a Teflon disc.

Thanks again to all of the attendees who stopped by our booth, and to the scientists who helped us learn more about mass spec in a week than we thought possible. See you next year at ASMS!

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