Direct Analytical Sample Quality Assessment (DASQ) for Biomarker Investigation: Qualifying CSF samples

Direct Analytical Sample Quality Assessment (DASQ) for Biomarker Investigation: Qualifying CSF samples

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Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) surrounds the brain and spinal column and contains small molecules, peptides, proteins etc. which play critical roles in many physiological processes in the central nervous system (CNS).CSF is considered a prime reservoirfor neurologicalstudiesbecause the content of proteins and metabolites and the changes in their concentrations directly reflect the internalmilieu of the brain: it offers a unique window to search for new biomarkers and to improve early diagnosis of neurological diseases. However, the complexities of the brain and human neurological disorders represent a severe roadblock to identify novel neurological biomarkers.A biomarker can be defined as a biochemical, pharmacological or physiological, indicator of a specific biological state or of a defined biological stage of an organism as represented in its characteristic specific sample. Such an indicator should be measurable and possible useful for diagnostic and/or prognostic purposes such as the prediction of disease progression, disease activity and targeted therapy efficacy. The identification of specific biomarkers is essential for the realization of personalized medicine, in terms of better estimated disease risk, more adapted therapies and improved disease outcome[1]. Fundamental to biomarker research is access to quality biospecimens that have to be carefully annotated with clinical, molecular and collection data. In fact,sample collection has to be based on well defined protocols which provide the fundamental standard operative procedures (SOPs) for workflow certification.
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) has recognized biobanks as essential tools for research and biomedical sciences. Large biobanks support in...

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...r hand, “in vitro” factors are linked to the procedure of sample collection, storage and analysis and they include localization of the lumbar puncture, due to the possible decreased rostro-caudal concentration gradient of most brain-derived proteins, the volume of CSF taken, that can influence protein concentration, the types of sampling tubes, the time delay between CSF collection and storage before assay; the effect of freezing process[10].
The high variety of these confounding factors could influence the biomarkers concentrations.Inside the CSF proteome, there are some proteins, already widely discussed in the literature, which we can consider as " guard proteins" in the assessment of the state of the sample. They are closely related to some critical analytical factors and the study of these, before each analysis focused on the search of biomarkers , is crucial.

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