The sequencing of the human genome and the advent of DNA chips and sophisticated bioinformatics platforms have enabled molecular biologists to take a more global view of biological systems and to analyze naturally occurring genetic variation. Microarrays of antibodies can measure the concentrations of many proteins quickly and simultaneously. Microarrays of genomically encoded proteins allow scientists to screen entire genomes for proteins that interact with particular factors, catalyze particular reactions, or act as substrates for protein-modifying enzymes or as targets of autoimmune responses. The new protein microarray platforms will prove invaluable to basic biological research, and will dramatically accelerate the pace of discovery of drug targets and diagnostic biomarkers.
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