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Human Eye Proteome Project (EyeOME)

The human eye is a complex organ that comprises the tear film, conjunctiva, cornea, aqueous humor, iris, ciliary body, lens, vitreous humor, retina, choroid, sclera, and optic nerve. The adjacent tissues, or ocular adnexae, consist of the lacrimal apparatus, eyelids, extraocular muscles, and orbit. There are certain structural qualities of the eye that make it unique in the human body, such as the transparency of the cornea, the focal abilities of the crystalline lens, and the light receptive qualities of the retina. Small disturbances in these delicate tissues can result in impaired vision and blindness. We highlight the need for identification of biological pathways for specific eye diseases such as age-related macular degeneration, primary open angle glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy using proteomics. The Human Eye Proteome Project was initiated in 2012 with a central goal of characterizing the proteome of the human eye. 

    Current lines of work:

    • Characterization of all subproteomes of the human eye
    • Development of selected reaction monitoring assays for proteoforms implicated in major eye diseases
    • Use of existing formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded eye tissues for discovery proteomics


    Semba RD, Enghild JJ, Venkatraman V, Dyrlund TF, Van Eyk JE. The Human Eye Proteome Project: perspectives on an emerging proteome. Proteomics. 2013 Aug;13(16):2500-11.

    Kang GY, Bang JY, Choi AJ, Yoon J, Lee WC, Choi S, Yoon S, Kim HC, Baek JH, Park HS, Lim HJ, Chung H. Exosomal proteins in the aqueous humor as novel biomarkers in patients with neovascular age-related macular degeneration. J Proteome Res. 2014 Feb 7;13(2):581-95.

    Zhang P, Dufresne C, Turner R, Ferri S, Venkatraman V, Karani R, Lutty GA, Van Eyk JE, Semba RD. The proteome of human retina. Proteomics. 2015 Feb;15(4):836-40.

    Semba RD, Lam M, Sun K, Zhang P, Schaumberg DA, Ferrucci L, Ping P, Van Eyk JE. Priorities and trends in the study of proteins in eye research, 1924-2014. Proteomics Clin Appl. 2015 Dec;9(11-12):1105-22.

    Skeie JM, Roybal CN, Mahajan VB. Proteomic insight into the molecular function of the vitreous. PLoS One. 2015 May 28;10(5):e0127567.

    Zhang P, Kirby D, Dufresne C, Chen Y, Turner R, Ferri S, Edward DP, Van Eyk JE, Semba RD. Defining the proteome of human iris, ciliary body, retinal pigment epithelium, and choroid. Proteomics. 2016 Apr;16(7):1146-53.

    Zhang P, Karani R, Turner RL, Dufresne C, Ferri S, Van Eyk JE, Semba RD. The proteome of normal human retrobulbar optic nerve and sclera. Proteomics. 2016 Aug 19. doi: 10.1002/pmic.201600229. [Epub ahead of print]

    Murthy KR, Dammalli M, Pinto SM, Murthy KB, Nirujogi RS, Madugundu AK, Dey G, Subbannayya Y, Mishra UK, Nair B, Gowda H, Prasad TS. A comprehensive proteomics analysis of the human iris tissue: ready to embrace postgenomics precision medicine in ophthalmology? OMICS. 2016 Sep;20(9):510-9. 


    Richard D. Semba, Chair

    Marius Ueffing, Co-chair

    Hyewon Chung, Co-chair

    For more information or participation opportunities please contact office(at)hupo.org.

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