To improve the development of new diagnostic tests based on saliva and personalized medicine, the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) has supported the development of the Human Salivary Proteome Wiki, the first public platform that catalogs and cures data from each of the thousands of proteins in our saliva.
Detailed in an article published May 25 in the Journal of Dental Research, the wiki provides researchers and clinicians with rich and unbiased evidence from multiple independent studies to help explore the dynamic and complex nature of saliva, as well as analytical tools to search data. tissue type, disease and more.
“This community-based database and knowledge will pave the way for harnessing the full potential of the salivary proteome for diagnosis, risk prediction and therapy for oral and systemic diseases and increase preparedness for future emerging diseases and pandemics. says Stefan Ruhl, lead researcher on the study, conservator of the Salivary Human Proteome wiki protein, and professor of oral biology at the School of Dental Medicine.
Saliva facilitates digestion, taste, swallowing and speech and serves as the first line of defense against pathogens in the mouth, protecting the body from harmful microbes. The role of saliva in immune responses, as well as the ease with which it can be collected as a fluid sample, make it a desirable tool in precision medicine and noninvasive diagnoses. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it was widely used to detect the virus and track the body’s immune response.
However, a challenge in the study of saliva is the high level of variability of the thousands of salivary proteins. Therefore, it is necessary to establish normal ranges for the composition of saliva to define the state of health, says Ruhl, who in 2020 co-authored research on how saliva is made, specifying the origins of saliva proteins. human to its sources.
“Saliva has become an attractive body fluid for on-site, remote, real-time control of oral and systemic health,” says William Lau of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and lead author of the study. “The scientific community needs a saliva-focused information platform that keeps pace with the rapid accumulation of new data and knowledge.”
“The Human Salivary Proteome Wiki will improve salivary sciences, saliva-based diagnosis, precision medicine and dentistry, and will ultimately facilitate personalized treatment for both oral and systemic diseases,” adds Preethi Chander, director of program of the NIDCR program of salivary biology and immunology.
Funded by NIDCR and developed in collaboration with the NIH Center for Information Technology, the Human Salivary Proteome Wiki was published in 2019 as an easy-to-use public database to provide rich tools for analysis, conservation, and annotation. biomedical research community.
The database collects information and research on the saliva proteome, genome, transcriptome (types and levels of mRNA expressed in salivary gland tissue) and glycoma (matrix of sugars bound to salivary glycoproteins).
Users can submit proposals to add, delete, or modify data to an interdisciplinary team of curators that ensures that the information is accurate and backed by sound scientific evidence. Annotations are also credited to researchers and clinicians who submit them to the wiki, helping to drive references to critical research.
Researchers will also host a series of activities that bring collaborators together to inspire new ideas and encourage cross-cutting collaborations.
Other researchers and curators include Markus Hardt, a basic leader in mass spectrometry at the Forsyth Institute; Yanhui Zhang, an associate professor at the Center for Health Sciences at the University of Tennessee; and Marcelo Freire, associate professor at the J. Craig Venter Institute.