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Metabolomics: Biomarkers

Metabolomics is the study of molecules whose molecular weight is very low and is located in the cells. Metabolites are found in different species of animals and help in extrapolation after research is done in the laboratory. There are different technologies used to measure metabolome, which include spectrometry of mass and nuclear resonance in order to get the measurement of specific entities in different chemicals. There are many challenges when doing research with the aim of applying metabolomics approach. Metabolites are complex compared to proteins and it is not easy to know their physical levels because, they change depending on the conditions. In order to carry out quality investigations of metabolomics, special equipments are required as well as qualified personnel who are disciplined (Dunn, et al. 2011).

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A biomarker is defined as a substance used to identify the possibility of occurrence of a given disease. Biomarkers have turned to be very important in the health centres and their patients because of many benefits derived from them. Diseases need to be cured before they manifest fully because of the risks and expenses that may accrue from them. Some of these risks are death and high medical expenses. These risks and expenses can be avoided if countermeasures are taken, which involves the use of biomarkers to detect probable diseases at an early stage and formulate countermeasures to cure this anticipated diseases at their early stage. The biomarkers develop and determine the type of drug that is going to be accurate and effective to cure the anticipated disease and therefore assuring the patients of the right medication to their illness (Mamas, et al. 2010).

Some of the biomarkers include that of high body temperature for identifying the probability of fever in the respective person or even the biomarker for blood pressure identifies the probability of that particular patient being in danger of getting a stroke. Biomarkers do not only identify the probability of a disease occurring to a patient but also measure how effective a particular treatment is in treating disease. In addition, it measures how identify the disease in the respective person is progressing. The drug which is related to biomarker is one of the most involved in assessing whether the prescribed treatment is appropriate and effective to treat the diseases in a specific patient. Biomarkers are continuing to be invented because of the advancement in the level of technology. This has enabled the respective patients suffering from various diseases to have tailored medicines that are only appropriate and specific for them. Biomarkers are mostly found in the laboratories of health centres and they assist the doctors in those health centres to make decisions about where their patients are suffering from and which kind of treatment is suitable for them.

Biomarkers have with time become diverse in their usage. In the past they were only used for testing any probability of blood pressure but nowadays they are even testing molecules, enzymes, genes and even hormones. Biomarkers are developed in accordance to their intended purpose. This is essential because; the biomarkers have been appropriate and accurate due to some sensitive diseases that the patients may be suffering from such as the chronic diseases whose diagnosis has to be accurate. This is because; they require the patient to take drugs for a number of years and their treatment has strong side effects. Biomarkers are usually relying on sample materials to determine the diagnosis that they are going to develop. These samples are mostly the blood and urine of the respective patient and they greatly determine the effectiveness of the treatment that the patient is going to be given to cure him or her from the disease that he or she is suffering from. Biomarkers fall under different categories that are either determined by their characteristics or their intended application. The biomarkers that are categorized in accordance to their characteristics include imaging biomarkers and those that are categorized in accordance to their intended application include diagnostic biomarkers. The discovery of biomarkers is determined by various approaches that include genomic approach, lipidomics approach, proteomic approach and lastly the metabolic approach (Brown, et al. 2005).

Metabolism converts food stored in the body to the energy for performing work. The metabolic paths change the state of diseases such as obesity, cardiovascular disease as well as diabetes. There are tools which monitor large number of metabolites using samples which are biological. The technology is still developing where proteomics, sequencing of genome as well as RNA analysis will change the profiling of samples in order to discover valuable biomarkers. Biochemicals which are small in size are found in the tissues of the body in different organisms. Changes in metabolisms are reported many times when the body is responding to drugs or disease. The analysis of subsets of metabolites brought about terms like lipidomics and evidence shows that the profile of metabolite has a lot of information about the diseases. The study of metabolic has been done in organisms in order to determine the way plants are controlled by genes to determine mutation of phenotypes. Diseases of human beings are diagnosed through metabolic profiling which includes errors that are inborn especially in infants. There are methods for monitoring how fatty acids are oxidised as well as amino acids. This involves screening to know the disorder and analysis of various diseases which are common to identify modulation of drugs and identification of biomarkers (Brown, et al. 2005).

The cores in resource of metabolomics help in doing research with the aim of developing institutions, programs for outreach as well as training. This move will be used for profiling of metabolomics and raising arguments regarding current national affairs. The main goals are to increase sophisticated technologies of metabolomics and ensure the research has professional leaders. The surrounding community need to be served and efforts made should be collaborative for research to be done using different approaches. The goals set should not be changed and activities including dissemination and grants should be employed. Funds will be needed for planning and transition with finances during specific period of time. The RCMRCs help to inform about the importance of research in metabolomics by ensuring that the leadership is at the national level through providing the required knowledge.

The core of promotion helps in planning activities which are collaborative that includes workshop and feasibility projects. There are programs for attending classroom lessons every week with practical to be done and attending programs offered by scientist in the laboratories. There is administration that deals with management and coordination of data so that it is recorded according to the guidelines given by committee of executives. The coordinator of programs has the knowledge of the existing technology as well as the management of the available resources. The administrator also is the overseer of budget, flow of work as well as travel. In addition, he or she ensures that all the agreements are followed and ensure there is schedule provided by the executives (Fell 1996).

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Metabolomics is a scientific study that originated from Oliver and it is concerned with the study of small micro organisms that are mostly found in the cells of any individual. It also addresses detection and quantification of these micro organisms, which are mostly referred to as metabolite in plural and metabolite in singular in the study of metabolomics. Metabolomics is used to study how various organisms relate and respond to different environments of any given place and the physiochological state of the respective organism that is being studied. These cell products found in the organisms that are being studied are usually very small and complex and it becomes difficult to analyze them to determine their quantity in the organism and also to detect whether they are present or not. Hence, specialized techniques are being developed on daily basis to ensure that accurate and specific information is obtained after the cell product of the organism has been studied completely. An example of this technique that is being used in the study of the cell product in any given organism is the target analysis (Fell 1996).

Target analysis is one of the major applications that are used in the study of metabolomics and it is essential in determining the detection and quantification of the metabolites in any given organism. The quantification of the metabolites in different organisms vary so much and it was scientifically proven when the metabolic techniques were applied and it was found that the metabolic profiles of different organisms are very different. Metabolomics is a very important scientific study because; it can be used to address the basic principles of life though it has some negative implications that accrue from it. One of the major negative implication that accrue from metabolomics is that it is unable to measure a big portion of elements in any given biological analysis system (Dunn, et al. 2010).

Metabolomics is of great importance in the identification and development of the respective drugs that are anticipated to cure the damages that are caused by the organisms in a patient. Once it identifies these factors, it discovers and develops a drug that will be the most appropriate and suitable one to the cure any disease that may be brought forth by the particular organisms. Metabolomics is also of great importance because it enables the scientific researchers to identify the cellular behaviour and hence helping them to determine how the cells of the respective patient will react to the drugs that are prescribed to him or her to cure the negative effects that accrued from the organisms detected and quantified in him or her. Failure to this, the patient may develop serious side effects after he or she has used any drug that is not appropriate to his or her cell behaviour (Efron & Tibshirani 1993).

Metabolomics is becoming of great importance in the treatment of biomarker diseases. The biomarkers seek to identify the possibility of a disease occurring to any individual and also seek to address the drugs that can be developed to treat the anticipated disease. Most of these diseases are caused by organisms that are found in the cells of the patient. Metabolomics is the best technology that was developed to identify and quantify these organisms and hence it has become very important in treating biomarker disease (Goodacre et al 2004). This is because of the accurate information that it gives and hence appropriate drugs have been discovered to prevent the anticipated diseases from occurring at their early stage. These micro organisms interact with the molecular substance of the cells and cause various diseases and hence affecting the respective patient. Some of the major diseases that occur as a result t of this interaction between the microorganism and the cell molecules are cancer.

Cancer is a very dangerous disease worldwide and its prevention is mostly preferred than discovering and developing drugs to cure it. There are inventions to develop cancer biomarkers that will be used to detect and quantify any micro organism that can interact with the cell molecule to cause cancer. From the past, there is no diagnosis of cancer that has been proven the most suitable one but biomarkers are still continuing to be developed to find one suitable diagnosis. Some of the current diagnosis that is still applied includes tumarkers, blood tests and urinalysis. The other diseases that can be caused by micro organisms interacting with the cell molecules are cardiovascular diseases. Cardiovascular diseases are caused by the insulin resistance syndrome. Like cancer there has not been a one suitable test that has been found for the treatment. Tests are continuing to be developed and there are those that are currently being used to diagnose cardiovascular diseases. The golden standard test is one of the current tests that are being used to diagnose cardiovascular diseases (Fell 1996).


Brown, M et al. 2005, ‘A metabolome pipeline, from concept to knowledge’, Metabolomics, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 39-51.

Dunn, W, Goodacre R, Mamas M & Neyses L 2010, ‘The role of metabolites and metabolomics in clinically applicable biomarkers of disease’, Arch Toxicol, vol. 85, no. 1, pp. 5-17.

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Dunn, WB et al. 2011, Procedures for large-scale metabolic profiling of serum and plasma using gas chromatography and liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry, Nature Protocols, vol. 6, pp. 1060–1083.

Efron, B & Tibshirani, R 1993, An introduction to the bootstrap, Chapman and Hall, London.

Fell, D 1996, Understanding the control of metabolism, Portland Press, London.

Goodacre, R et al. 2004, ‘Metabolomics by numbers: Acquiring and understanding global metabolite data’. TRENDS in Biotechnology, vol. 22, no.5, pp. 245-252.

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