Marking Parkinson's

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    More accurate disease biomarkers open the door to earlier detection, more effective prevention, and better treatment. To this end, a team of researchers from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and the UCLA School of Medicine collaborated to study two oxidative modifications of the amino acid tyrosine (3, 4- dihydroxyphenylalanine [DOPA] and dopaquinone), to examine a possible link to multiple human diseases, including Parkinson’s disease, atherosclerosis, myocardial disease, and cataracts. Using the world-class proteomics capabilities at the Department of Energy’s EMSL—specifically, liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) with a custom, EMSL-innovated electrospray ionization interface—the team

    produced the first proteome survey of these tyrosine modifications in mouse brain and heart tissues. The detailed results of this study may help establish more sensitive biomarkers for disease pathologies; they also complement current biomarkers by helping distinguish inflammatory from non-inflammatory physiological states.

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