Multiomics is about the study of complete genetic or molecular profiles of humans and other organisms. It combines multiple levels of molecular biology to increase the understanding of these profiles. When it comes to healthcare, these data are relevant, because they help us to better understand the origin, behavior and development of certain disorders. Multiomics is used for instance in the research of cancer, infectious diseases and chronic disorders. Multiomics-based medicine is slowly but surely making a shift from the research field to medical practice, both in diagnostic and in therapeutic settings.
Genomics, Transcriptomics, Proteomics, Metabolomics
Although the -omics field is wide (and expanding), at this moment the following categories in particular are gaining momentum when it comes to health care purposes:
Genomics entails the study of the DNA of an organism, which contains the complete set of genetic instructions. The primary structure of genetic material is defined through sequencing: determining the exact order of the building blocks of that material. The order in which these building blocks occur is unique for each organism. In genomics, this is called DNA sequencing. Sequencing is done by Sanger sequencing or capillary electrophoresis.
Transcriptomics investigates the mRNA (messenger RNA) expressions of an organism. All RNA plays a role in building proteins, but it is mRNA that contains the specific ‘recipe’ for a protein. In transcriptomics, researchers use RNA sequencing to determine the composition of the mRNA.
Proteomics is the study of the collection of proteins of an organism, referred to as the proteome. The proteome is investigated using protein sequencing. Mass spectrometry is the most used method for protein sequencing.
Metabolomics refers to the study of the set of metabolites of an organism. Collectively, these molecules and their interactions within a biological system are known as the metabolome. To examine the metabolome, researchers make use of metabolite quantification.