A massive new online metabolite database could soon be helping to transform the field of metabolomics research, say its creators.
The newly expanded searchable database, called METLIN, is described in this month’s issue of Nature Biotechnology, where researchers outline the potential benefits of the new resource.
"If you don't have a database like METLIN, the value of metabomic data would be very limited because each study would require manual searches and ultimately fail to culminate in enough reference data to arrive at conclusive metabolite identifications," said team leader Gary Siuzdak, a metabolomics expert at Scripps Research Institute, USA – where the database was developed.
"For decades biochemical studies have targeted only a handful of canonical metabolites, and comprehensive profiling has been mostly limited to genes and proteins," added Gary Patti, who was involved in developing the database.
But now he says the new field of metabolomics has emerged with huge promise for advancements in nutrition and health: "I think it's a really exciting time because the insights being provided by metabolomics are in some cases affecting the way in which we think about fundamental biochemistry."
The full paper can be found here
Source: Nature Biotechnology
Volume 30, Issue 9, Page 826, doi : 10.1038/nbt.2348
“An accelerated workflow for untargeted metabolomics using the METLIN database”
Authors:Ralf Tautenhahn, Kevin Cho, Winnie Uritboonthai, Zhengjiang Zhu, Gary J Patti, Gary Siuzdak