Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Review
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Two-dimensional protein electrophoresis: from molecular pathway discovery to biomarker discovery in neurological disorders.

Two-dimensional protein electrophoresis (2-DE) has undergone many technical improvements in the past 30 years, resulting in an analytical method that is unparalleled in the resolution of complex protein mixtures and capable of quantifying changes in protein expression from a wide variety of tissues and samples. The technique has been applied in many studies of neurologic disease to identify changes in spot patterns that correlate with disease. The true power of the technique emerges when it is coupled to state-of-the-art methods in mass spectrometry, which enable identification of the protein or proteins contained within a spot of interest on a 2-DE map. Investigators have successfully applied the technique to gain improved understanding of neurologic disease mechanisms in humans and in animal models and to discover biomarkers that are useful in the clinical setting. An important extension to these efforts that has not been realized thus far is the desire to profile changes in protein expression that result from therapy to help relate disease-modifying effects at the molecular level with clinical outcomes. Here we review the major advances in 2-DE methods and discuss specific examples of its application in the study of neurologic diseases.

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