Talk Abstract

This presentation will discuss the Human Proteome Project (HPP), efforts to elucidate (proteomics) evidence for the expression of the major family of so-called “missing proteins” including the elusive olfactory receptor family and elaborate on the need for shared informatics metrics and a common language.

The HPP is a global initiative aiming to generate maps of the protein-based molecular architecture of the human body and become a resource to help elucidate biological and molecular function and advance diagnosis and treatment of diseases. The HPP is broadly divided into the Chromosomal-HPP and Biology/Disease-HPP. The C-HPP activity addresses evidence for the existence of each of the ~20,300 proteins coded for by the human genome irrespective of any interesting biology that the protein may have. The B/D-HPP focusses upon human biology and disease-related proteins, pathways, post-translational modifications and interactions. Collectively, the two approaches are built on 3 platforms (mass spectrometry, affinity reagents and informatics/databases) to comprehensively map the human proteome.

I will also discuss the biology of the largest family of “missing proteins” and comment about possible biochemical characteristics that contribute to these proteins being labelled as “missing”. I discuss the need for; (i) a common HPP language, (ii) agreed metrics, (iii) re-analysis of all available mass spectrometry evidence for the olfactory receptor family, and (iv) report integrated HPP outcomes. In addition, HUPO has identified the need for a new language that allows it to explain the different “bins” into which all proteins expressed by the human genome can be carefully characterised. HUPO has called for a global approach to finding the missing proteins and I suggest that a single Wikipedia-like listing all missing proteins by gene name, searchable to a compendium of accessible/modifiable Wiki pages for each “missing proteins” may be appropriate. This would allow motivated scientists to deposit/accumulate all types of “omics” scientific data into a single repository. That repository could act as a series of clues to where, where, why, how and with what partners these proteins are expressed in the normal, stressed and diseased human tissues.

Speaker Biography

Mark Scott Baker: Born 1956 Sydney, Australia. Completed PhD in 1985 at Macquarie University and subsequent research focused on biochemistry of proteins in human health and disease (e.g., arthritis, breast, ovarian, prostate and colorectal cancer). Mark made stellar contributions to the growth of proteomics societies at the national, regional and international levels from the outset, including a successful stint in the US biotech sector. In 2004, he co-founded the Australasian Proteomics Society, was a founding AO-HUPO Councillor and foundation member of the Human Proteome Organisation called HUPO. Mark returned from the US to serve as the national proteomics facility’s (APAF) CEO, supporting Australia’s national proteomics effort and securing significant government support for national systems biology infrastructure, including bioinformatics, genomics, metabolomics. Mark was elected to the HUPO Board in 2005 and has served there since. He was elected onto the HUPO Executive in 2012 and elected to be the next HUPO President in 2013. Mark co-chaired the 9th HUPO World Congress in Sydney where the Human Proteome Project was launched. He is a chair or member of many HUP scientific initiatives and management committees, as well as sitting on prestigious journals Editorial Boards and industry Advisory Boards. Mark was recognised in 2012 for his international service with the HUPO Distinguished Service Award. He has published ~130 peer-reviewed papers, graduated more than 35 Honours/PhD graduates and is the inventor of 4 technology patents. He remains an advocate for industry: academic ventures, media engagement and promotion of career paths for young researchers. He is passionate about cooking, epicure, Rugby and biomedical research.