Proteomics challenging medicine
The study of the genome dictated that the whole is more than the sum of its parts; genes do not function independently but in networks. The impact of this understanding was explosive. It acknowledged the concept that this interplay of genes is at least equally significant to their individual functions, and indicated that genome alone cannot describe the whole of an organism, not without the study of the systems of gene products. Proteomics and a range of other "-omics" sciences were thus created, uterly overwhelming in their magnitude and complexity. The development of proteomics would have been impossible without the technological benefits of genome research, despite the fact that great differences exist between proteomic and genomic analysis. High-throughput technologies evolved generating a huge amount of data in dire need of interpretation. A pivotal role for bioinformatics emerged, with this science becoming able of producing primary biological knowledge. Biology was transformed into a big science and systems biology was born. All these act as a pressure generating force towards the evolution of medicine not only in terms of clinical applications but, more importantly, as a way of thinking. The classical qualitative approach previously pacing the hypothesis-driven investigations is gradually abandoned and quantitative approaches necessitate discovery-driven ways towards clinical diagnosis. Medicine clearly ought to be prepared to adapt to this revolution. Copyright © Hellenic Society of Haematology.