Since the metabolome is closely tied to an organism's genotype, its physiology and its environment (what the organism eats or breathes), metabolomics offers a unique opportunity to look at genotype-phenotype as well as genotype-environment relationships.
The metabolome (like the genome or proteome) can be described as the complete complement of small molecule chemicals (metabolites) found in or produced by an organism.|
Metabolomics, or metabolic profiling, is an emerging branch of genetic research that uses metabolites as very sensitive reporters to:
Indeed, Metabolomics is increasingly being used in a variety of health applications including pharmacology, pre-clinical drug trials, toxicology, transplant monitoring, newborn screening and clinical chemistry. Physicians and scientists around the world are now beginning to realize that metabolic profiling could have a significant impact on the diagnosis, prediction, prevention and monitoring of many genetic, infectious and environmental diseases. However, a key limitation to metabolomics is the fact that the human metabolome is not at all well characterized.
- Detect tiny changes or mutations that happen to genes or proteins
- Monitor and/or measure the larger-scale physiological changes that occur in response to subtle changes in the environment
- Assist in the improved monitoring of adverse drug reactions (so-called drug allergies)