A "crossomics" study analysing variability of different components in peripheral blood of healthy caucasoid individuals

PLoS One. 2012;7(1):e28761. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0028761. Epub 2012 Jan 12.


Background: Different immunotherapy approaches for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases are being developed and tested in clinical studies worldwide. Their resulting complex experimental data should be properly evaluated, therefore reliable normal healthy control baseline values are indispensable.

Methodology/principal findings: To assess intra- and inter-individual variability of various biomarkers, peripheral blood of 16 age and gender equilibrated healthy volunteers was sampled on 3 different days within a period of one month. Complex "crossomics" analyses of plasma metabolite profiles, antibody concentrations and lymphocyte subset counts as well as whole genome expression profiling in CD4+T and NK cells were performed. Some of the observed age, gender and BMI dependences are in agreement with the existing knowledge, like negative correlation between sex hormone levels and age or BMI related increase in lipids and soluble sugars. Thus we can assume that the distribution of all 39.743 analysed markers is well representing the normal Caucasoid population. All lymphocyte subsets, 20% of metabolites and less than 10% of genes, were identified as highly variable in our dataset.

Conclusions/significance: Our study shows that the intra-individual variability was at least two-fold lower compared to the inter-individual one at all investigated levels, showing the importance of personalised medicine approach from yet another perspective.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies / immunology
  • Body Mass Index
  • CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • Cytological Techniques / methods*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Health*
  • Humans
  • Killer Cells, Natural / metabolism
  • Lymphocyte Subsets / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Observer Variation
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Principal Component Analysis
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • White People*
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies
  • RNA, Messenger