Metabolomics is a powerful technique for the discovery of novel biomarkers and elucidation of biochemical pathways to improve diagnosis, prognosis and therapy. An advantage of this approach is its ability to assess global metabolic profiles to enhance pathologic characterization. Urine is an ideal bio-medium for disease study because it is readily available, easily obtained and less complex than other body fluids. Ease of collection allows for serial sampling to monitor disease and therapeutic response. Because of this potential, this paper will review urine metabolomic analysis, discuss its significance in the post-genomic era and highlight the specific roles of endogenous small molecule metabolites in this emerging field.
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