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Keywords:

  • mass spectrometry;
  • systems biology;
  • neuroproteomics;
  • hippocampus;
  • epilepsy

Abstract

The brain is unquestionably the most fascinating organ, and the hippocampus is crucial in memory storage and retrieval and plays an important role in stress response. In temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), the seizure origin typically involves the hippocampal formation. Despite tremendous progress, current knowledge falls short of being able to explain its function. An emerging approach toward an improved understanding of the complex molecular mechanisms that underlie functions of the brain and hippocampus is neuroproteomics. Mass spectrometry has been widely used to analyze biological samples, and has evolved into an indispensable tool for proteomics research. In this review, we present a general overview of the application of mass spectrometry in proteomics, summarize neuroproteomics and systems biology-based discovery of protein biomarkers for epilepsy, discuss the methodology needed to explore the epileptic hippocampus proteome, and also focus on applications of ingenuity pathway analysis (IPA) in disease research. This neuroproteomics survey presents a framework for large-scale protein research in epilepsy that can be applied for immediate epileptic biomarker discovery and the far-reaching systems biology understanding of the protein regulatory networks. Ultimately, knowledge attained through neuroproteomics could lead to clinical diagnostics and therapeutics to lessen the burden of epilepsy on society. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc., Mass Spec Rev 29:197–246, 2010