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Protein microarrays: a chance to study microorganisms?


Kreutzberger,  Jürgen
Dept. of Vertebrate Genomics (Head: Hans Lehrach), Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Max Planck Society;

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Kreutzberger, J. (2006). Protein microarrays: a chance to study microorganisms? Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 70(4), 383-390. doi:10.1007/s00253-006-0312-y.

Within the last 5 years, protein microarrays have been developed and applied to multiple approaches: identification of protein–protein interactions or protein–small molecule interactions, cancer profiling, detection of microorganisms and toxins, and identification of antibodies due to allergens, autoantigens, and pathogens. Protein microarrays are small size (typically in the microscopy slide format) planar analytical devices with probes arranged in high density to provide the ability to screen several hundred to thousand known substrates (e.g., proteins, peptides, antibodies) simultaneously. Due to their small size, only minute amounts of spotted probes and analytes (e.g., serum) are needed; this is a particularly important feature, for these are limited or expensive. In this review, different types of protein microarrays are reviewed: protein microarrays (PMAs), with spotted proteins or peptides; antibody microarrays (AMAs), with spotted antibodies or antibody fragments (e.g., scFv); reverse phase protein microarrays (RPMAs), a special form of PMA where crude protein mixtures (e.g., cell lysates, fractions) are spotted; and nonprotein microarrays (NPMAs) where macromolecules other than proteins and nucleic acids (e.g., carbohydrates, monosaccharides, lipopolysaccharides) are spotted. In this study, exemplary experiments for all types of protein arrays are discussed wherever applicable with regard to investigations of microorganisms.