Infectious Diseases and Therapy
The Potential of Omics Technologies in Lyme Disease Biomarker Discovery and Early Detection
Open Access Review
First Online: 29 November 2016
<snip from full text>Abstract
Lyme borreliosis (LB) is the most prevalent arthropod-borne infectious disease in North America and many countries of the temperate Northern Hemisphere. It is associated with local and systemic manifestations and has persistent post-treatment health complications in some individuals. Innate and acquired immunity-related inflammation is likely to play a critical role in both host defense against Borrelia burgdorferi and disease severity. Large-scale analytical approaches to quantify gene expression (transcriptomics), proteins (proteomics) and metabolites (metabolomics) in LB have recently emerged with a potential to advance the development of disease biomarkers in early, disseminated and post treatment disease stages. These technologies may permit defining the disease stage and facilitate its early detection to improve diagnosis. They will also likely allow elucidating the underlying molecular pathways to aid in identifying molecular targets for therapy. This article reviews the findings within the field of omics relevant to LB and its prospective utility in developing an array of biomarkers that can be employed in LB diagnosis and detection particularly at the early disease stages.
The full text contains some interesting heat maps and graphics created from information extrapolated from the original studies and supplementary materials referenced in this review article.Omics Biosignature in the Early Stages of Lyme Disease
Omics technologies permit examining the differences in DNA, RNA, proteins, metabolites and other molecules between and among species. These molecular profiles may vary with cell or tissue exposure to chemicals, drugs or pathological agents and thus have potential use in elucidating disease etiology, detection and potential preventive approaches. Omics assessments are often conducted in a high-throughput manner to produce large data sets on functional, structural and/or response-related alterations within a particular body compartment, e.g., cell, tissue or fluid. As previously stated, “these new methods have already facilitated significant advances in our understanding of the molecular responses to cell and tissue damage, and of perturbations in functional cellular systems” . Furthermore, the integrated approach implemented in omics can enable a comprehensive delineation of the genetic control to cellular functions and responses to alterations.
The contributions of an individual omics platform to recognizing LB etiology and the potential of these techniques in identifying a panel of biomarkers for early disease detection and diagnosis present distinct challenges given the paucity of existing information. For example, in humans, no genome-wide association study has been conducted yet on LB with a small number of reports existing on other omics techniques. Highlighted below is, therefore, the available information from transcriptomics, metabolomics and inflammatomics studies specifically at the early disease stages.