Mass spectrometry accelerates membrane protein analysis

Trends Biochem Sci. 2011 Jul;36(7):388-96. doi: 10.1016/j.tibs.2011.04.005. Epub 2011 May 26.


Cellular membranes are composed of proteins and glyco- and phospholipids and play an indispensible role in maintaining cellular integrity and homeostasis, by physically restricting biochemical processes within cells and providing protection. Membrane proteins perform many essential functions, which include operating as transporters, adhesion-anchors, receptors, and enzymes. Recent advancements in proteomic mass spectrometry have resulted in substantial progress towards the determination of the plasma membrane (PM) proteome, resolution of membrane protein topology, establishment of numerous receptor protein complexes, identification of ligand-receptor pairs, and the elucidation of signaling networks originating at the PM. Here, we discuss the recent accelerated success of discovery-based proteomic pipelines for the establishment of a complete membrane proteome.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Membrane / chemistry
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Mass Spectrometry / methods*
  • Mass Spectrometry / trends
  • Membrane Proteins / analysis*
  • Membrane Proteins / chemistry
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Proteomics / methods*
  • Proteomics / trends


  • Membrane Proteins