From Science Daily:

Scientists have won new knowledge on the molecular background of fat and energy metabolism disorders through a large-scale proteomic study with mice. The proteome is the entire set of proteins — in this case, proteins from the livers of mice. A research group specialising in proteomics, led by ETH Zurich Professor Ruedi Aebersold, and a group specialising in mitochondrial physiology and liver diseases, led by EPFL Professor Johan Auwerx, worked together on this ground-breaking project.

“As with humans, there are individual differences in mice; for example, in cholesterol metabolism or susceptibility to metabolic disorders such as fatty liver,” says Evan Williams, one of the two lead authors of the study, which has been published in the latest edition of the scientific journal Science. Williams conducted the work as a doctoral student at EPFL and is now a postdoc at ETH Zurich. “Some of these differences could be explained genetically, but not all,” he says.

Latest technique

The scientists compiled comprehensive protein data from a large group of mice to help them explain additional metabolic differences. They used a mass spectrometry measuring technique, known as SWATH-MS, developed in recent years by Aebersold’s group at ETH Zurich. It allowed the researchers to measure the concentrations of a broad spectrum of liver proteins in the laboratory animals.

“It’s much more complex to measure the set of proteins than to sequence the entire genome,” explains Yibo Wu, postdoc in Aebersold’s group and co-lead author of the study. “Using the SWATH-MS technique, it’s possible to…

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