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Keywords:

  • Genomics;
  • Human neutrophil;
  • LC-MS/MS;
  • Trauma

Purpose

Polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs) play an important role in mediating the innate immune response after severe traumatic injury; however, the cellular proteome response to traumatic condition is still largely unknown.

Experimental design

We applied 2D-LC-MS/MS-based shotgun proteomics to perform comparative proteome profiling of human PMNs from severe trauma patients and healthy controls.

Results

A total of 197 out of ∼2500 proteins (being identified with at least two peptides) were observed with significant abundance changes following the injury. The proteomics data were further compared with transcriptomics data for the same genes obtained from an independent patient cohort. The comparison showed that the protein abundance changes for the majority of proteins were consistent with the mRNA abundance changes in terms of directions of changes. Moreover, increased protein secretion was suggested as one of the mechanisms contributing to the observed discrepancy between protein and mRNA abundance changes. Functional analyses of the altered proteins showed that many of these proteins were involved in immune response, protein biosynthesis, protein transport, NRF2-mediated oxidative stress response, the ubiquitin-proteasome system, and apoptosis pathways.

Conclusions and clinical relevance

Our data suggest increased neutrophil activation and inhibited neutrophil apoptosis in response to trauma. The study not only reveals an overall picture of functional neutrophil response to trauma at the proteome level, but also provides a rich proteomics data resource of trauma-associated changes in the neutrophil that will be valuable for further studies of the functions of individual proteins in PMNs.