Novel functional proteins coded by the human genome discovered in metastases of melanoma patients

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In the advanced stages, malignant melanoma (MM) has a very poor prognosis. Due to tremendous efforts in cancer research over the last 10 years, and the introduction of novel therapies such as targeted therapies and immunomodulators, the rather dark horizon of the median survival has dramatically changed from under 1 year to several years. With the advent of proteomics, deep-mining studies can reach low-abundant expression levels. The complexity of the proteome, however, still surpasses the dynamic range capabilities of current analytical techniques. Consequently, many predicted protein products with potential biological functions have not yet been verified in experimental proteomic data. This category of ‘missing proteins’ (MP) is comprised of all proteins that have been predicted but are currently unverified. As part of the initiative launched in 2016 in the USA, the European Cancer Moonshot Center has performed numerous deep proteomics analyses on samples from MM patients. In this study, nine MPs were clearly identified by mass spectrometry in MM metastases. Some MPs significantly correlated with proteins that possess identical PFAM structural domains; and other MPs were significantly associated with cancer-related proteins. This is the first study to our knowledge, where unknown and novel proteins have been annotated in metastatic melanoma tumour tissue.


External organisations
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • Warsaw University of Life Sciences
  • Semmelweis University
  • Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
  • European Bioinformatics Institute
  • AstraZeneca, Sweden
  • University of Groningen
  • Yonsei University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Cancer and Oncology


  • Biobank, Mass spectrometry, Melanoma, Missing proteins, Proteomics, Tissue
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-272
Number of pages12
JournalCell Biology and Toxicology
Issue number3
Early online date2019 Oct 10
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jun
Publication categoryResearch