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Huber, Marinus; Kepesidis, Kosmas; Voronina, Liudmila; Bozic, Masa; Trubetskov, Michael; Harbeck, Nadia; Krausz, Ferenc ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6525-9449 and Zigman, Mihaela (2021): Stability of person-specific blood-based infrared molecular fingerprints opens up prospects for health monitoring. In: Nature Communications, Vol. 12, No. 1, 1511 [PDF, 1MB]


Health state transitions are reflected in characteristic changes in the molecular composition of biofluids. Detecting these changes in parallel, across a broad spectrum of molecular species, could contribute to the detection of abnormal physiologies. Fingerprinting of biofluids by infrared vibrational spectroscopy offers that capacity. Whether its potential for health monitoring can indeed be exploited critically depends on how stable infrared molecular fingerprints (IMFs) of individuals prove to be over time. Here we report a proof-of-concept study that addresses this question. Using Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, we have fingerprinted blood serum and plasma samples from 31 healthy, non-symptomatic individuals, who were sampled up to 13 times over a period of 7 weeks and again after 6 months. The measurements were performed directly on liquid serum and plasma samples, yielding a time- and cost-effective workflow and a high degree of reproducibility. The resulting IMFs were found to be highly stable over clinically relevant time scales. Single measurements yielded a multiplicity of person-specific spectral markers, allowing individual molecular phenotypes to be detected and followed over time. This previously unknown temporal stability of individual biochemical fingerprints forms the basis for future applications of blood-based infrared spectral fingerprinting as a multiomics-based mode of health monitoring. Health status transitions are reflected as characteristic changes in molecular composition of biofluids. Here, the authors apply infrared molecular fingerprinting and reveal that blood-based phenotypes are sufficiently stable over time, providing the basis for time- and cost-effective health monitoring.

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