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Keywords:

  • Biomarker discovery;
  • HCV;
  • mass spectrometry;
  • post-translational modifications;
  • proteomics

Abstract

Developing antiviral drugs, vaccines and diagnostic markers is still the most ambitious challenge in clinical virology. In the past few decades, data from high-throughput technologies have allowed for the rapid development of new antiviral therapeutic strategies, thus making a profound impact on translational research. Most of the current preclinical studies in virology are aimed at evaluating the dynamic composition and localization of the protein platforms involved in various host–virus interactions. Among the different possible approaches, mass spectrometry-based proteomics is increasingly being used to define the protein composition in subcellular compartments, quantify differential protein expression among samples, characterize protein complexes, and analyse protein post-translational modifications. Here, we review the current knowledge of the most useful proteomic approaches in the study of viral persistence and pathogenicity, with a particular focus on recent advances in hepatitis C research.