Plasma proteome response to severe burn injury revealed by 18O-labeled "universal" reference-based quantitative proteomics.
ABSTRACT A burn injury represents one of the most severe forms of human trauma and is responsible for significant mortality worldwide. Here, we present the first quantitative proteomics investigation of the blood plasma proteome response to severe burn injury by comparing the plasma protein concentrations of 10 healthy control subjects with those of 15 severe burn patients at two time-points following the injury. The overall analytical strategy for this work integrated immunoaffinity depletion of the 12 most abundant plasma proteins with cysteinyl-peptide enrichment-based fractionation prior to LC-MS analyses of individual patient samples. Incorporation of an 18O-labeled "universal" reference among the sample sets enabled precise relative quantification across samples. In total, 313 plasma proteins confidently identified with two or more unique peptides were quantified. Following statistical analysis, 110 proteins exhibited significant abundance changes in response to the burn injury. The observed changes in protein concentrations suggest significant inflammatory and hypermetabolic response to the injury, which is supported by the fact that many of the identified proteins are associated with acute phase response signaling, the complement system, and coagulation system pathways. The regulation of approximately 35 proteins observed in this study is in agreement with previous results reported for inflammatory or burn response, but approximately 50 potentially novel proteins previously not known to be associated with burn response or inflammation are also found. Elucidating proteins involved in the response to severe burn injury may reveal novel targets for therapeutic interventions as well as potential predictive biomarkers for patient outcomes such as multiple organ failure.