Aspergillosis is a fungal disease due to Aspergillus molds that can affect both humans and animals. As routine diagnosis remains difficult, improvement of basic knowledge with respect to its pathophysiology is critical to search for new biomarkers of infection and new therapeutic targets. Large-scale proteomics allows assessment of protein changes during various disease processes. In the present study, mass spectrometry iTRAQ® (isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation) protocol was used for direct identification and relative quantitation of host proteins in diseased fluids and tissues collected from an experimental rat model challenged with Aspergillus, as well as in blood obtained from naturally-infected penguins. In all, mass spectrometry analysis revealed that proteome during aspergillosis was mostly represented by proteins that usually express role in metabolic processes and biological process regulation. Ten and 17 proteins were significantly 4.0-fold overrepresented in blood of Aspergillus-diseased rats and penguins, respectively, while five and 39 were negatively 4.0-fold depleted within the same samples. In rat lungs, 33 proteins were identified with positive or negative relative changes versus controls and were quite different from those identified in the blood. Except for some zinc finger proteins, kinases, and histone transferases, and while three pathways were common (Wnt, cadherin and FGF), great inter-species variabilities were observed regarding the identity of the differentially-represented proteins. Thus, this finding confirmed how difficult it is to define a unique biomarker of infection. iTRAQ® protocol appears as a convenient proteomic tool that is greatly suited to ex vivo exploratory studies and should be considered as preliminary step before validation of new diagnostic markers and new therapeutic targets in humans.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)