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Respiratory Disorders

Respiratory Disorders are Life-Threatening

Respiratory disorders are diseases that impact the lungs, airways, and respiration. They range from mild diseases, such as influenza, to life-threatening diseases, such as pneumonia and cystic fibrosis (CF). Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, and pulmonary fibrosis are other examples of chronic lung conditions that can significantly impact the quality of life. If left untreated, lung disease can produce other health complications and life-threatening conditions. The management of such conditions can be greatly enhanced using personalized approaches to direct treatment.

The Complexity of Respiratory Diseases Requires a Personalized Approach

Respiratory diseases pose a tremendous burden on society and healthcare systems globally. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that the top five respiratory diseases account for 17.4% of deaths. The National Center for Health Statistics estimates that more than 25 million people in the United States have asthma.1,2 Respiratory disorders are varied and involve distinct pathways. A narrow focus is not enough to understand the intricacy of these diseases to develop effective drug targets. However, more understanding is needed about the aspects of respiratory disease occurrence and severity. The increasing incidence and complexity of respiratory disorders demand a more comprehensive, multidisciplinary, and personalized approach to diagnosing and treating each patient.

Metabolomics Works On Many Sample Types

Metabolon’s technology provides a high-fidelity and reproducible analysis of a biological sample’s metabolomic profile. Metabolomics can uniquely provide details of perturbations in fundamental biochemical pathways or mechanisms and the identification of novel biochemical processes. Global metabolomics can be applied to cultured cells, tissues from model organisms, and patient biopsies to discover novel metabolic drivers of biological processes. These insights can be translated into actionable biomarkers for respiratory diseases through follow-on targeted panels. Metabolon therefore can aid in the discovery of biomarkers that will aid the diagnosis and treatment of respiratory disorders with greater sensitivity, specificity, and precision.

Metabolon—From Biomarkers to Drug Development

Metabolomics is rapidly gaining adoption in drug development, largely due to its ability to discover and validate biomarkers that can help support key decisions throughout the process, from discovery through clinical trials. Metabolon is the industry leader in the ability to reveal metabolic perturbations across all biochemical pathways including amino acids, carbohydrates, lipids, nucleotides, microbiota metabolism, energy, cofactors and vitamins, xenobiotics, and novel metabolites. Metabolon’s reference library includes 5400+ metabolites from various biological sources. A comprehensive understanding of metabolomic data may provide insights into the diagnosis, prognosis, and pharmacodynamic evaluation of respiratory disorders.

See how Metabolon can advance your path to preclinical and clinical insights

Metabolomics Panels for Respiratory Disorders

Amino Acids Targeted Panel

Amino acids (AA) are the foundational building blocks for peptides and proteins. These small molecules regulate metabolic pathways that are involved in cell maintenance, growth, reproduction, and immunity. Branched chain amino acids play a large role in building muscle tissue and participate in increasing protein synthesis. Amino acids also play a role in cell signaling, gene expression and protein phosphorylation. Maintaining an optimal balance of amino acids is vital to maintaining a stable equilibrium of physiological processes.
Amino Acids Targeted Panel
Bile Acids Targeted Panel

Bile Acids Targeted Panel

Bile acids are derived from cholesterol and serve an important role in emulsifying and digesting lipids. In addition, their metabolism is intimately involved with the microbiota, and they have been shown to exhibit endocrine and metabolic activity via receptors like FXR and TGR5. The Bile Acids Targeted Panel measures all the major human and rodent primary and secondary bile acids as well as their glycine and taurine conjugates.

Central Carbons Targeted Panel

Central carbon metabolism involves the enzymatic conversion of sugars into metabolic precursors that are used to generate the entire biomass of the cell. The metabolites in this panel include key citric acid cycle compounds that connect carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism. In addition to supplying key metabolic precursors, central carbon metabolism is used to oxidize simple sugar molecules obtained from food to supply energy to living systems. Measurement of central carbon metabolites has great industrial relevance since it may allow the engineering of selected metabolic steps to optimize carbon flow toward precursors for industrially important metabolites.
Central Carbons Targeted Panel
Free Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

Free Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

Fatty acids play many physiologically important roles in an organism. They are not only key metabolites of energy storage and production but also the basic building blocks of complex lipids that form cellular membranes. A variety of bioactive forms of fatty acid metabolites, known as lipid mediators, act as local hormones and are involved in many physiological systems and pathological processes. Free fatty acids (FFA, non-esterified fatty acids, NEFA) are the nonbound fraction of the total fatty acid pool. The determination of FFAs in plasma (or serum) is of clinical relevance as the association between FFAs and many diseases is well-known (eg, insulin resistance/type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease).

Salivary Glucose Single Analyte Assay

Daily monitoring of glucose levels is an essential part of managing diabetes. However, blood glucose testing usually involves finger pricks, an invasive procedure that is troublesome to some patients. Therefore, increasing efforts have been made to develop a non-invasive method by self-testing salivary glucose levels, which are two orders of magnitude lower than those in blood.
Salivary Glucose Single Analyte Assay
Indoles/Uremic Toxicity Targeted Panel

Indoles/Uremic Toxicity Targeted Panel

Uremic toxicity is the buildup of toxic analytes that are not able to be adequately filtered by the kidneys due to kidney injury or disease. Indole metabolites of tryptophan, the tyrosine metabolite p-cresol sulfate and 4-ethylphenyl sulfate are a key group of gut microbiota-derived uremic compounds. Their formation is the result of a complex interaction between diet, gut microbiota and host. Increased production of these compounds by the gut microbiota and reduced clearance in kidney disease can lead to toxicity affecting nearly all systems in the body.

Metal Analysis Targeted Panel

Metabolon’s ICP-MS-based Metal Analysis Targeted Panel provides precise measurements of biologically important metal ions in biological samples. In addition to the well-established problems of toxicity associated with several metals, the vital role these ions play in a variety of biological pathways whether by catalyzing enzymatic reactions or stabilizing protein structures is still becoming clear. Intimately intertwined with the proteome and metabolome, metal ions represent an intrinsic piece vital to the holistic understanding of biological phenomena ranging from development through normal functioning to disease. Without an understanding of the role of these metals, a complete understanding of biological processes is not possible. The Metal Analysis Targeted Panel measures a variety of metals ions ranging from the macro level (ppm) including Na, K, and Ca to the micro level (ppb) including Mo, Cu, and Ni.
Metal Analysis Targeted Panel
Short Chain Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

Short Chain Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) are produced in the colon by the gut microbiota. They are the end products of anaerobic fermentation of dietary fibers and protein/peptides in the small intestine. Their formation is the result of a complex interaction between diet, gut microbiota, and host. SCFAs influence the physiology of the colon serving as energy sources by host cells and the intestinal microbiota as well as participating in different host signaling mechanisms.

Tryptophan/Kynurenine Ratio Targeted Panel

The kynurenine pathway is a metabolic pathway leading to the production of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) from the enzymatic conversion of tryptophan. Immune activation leads to the formation of kynurenine with corresponding loss of tryptophan.

The kynurenine/tryptophan ratio has been used to reflect the activity of the tryptophan-degrading enzyme indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) in cellular inflammatory response related to symptoms of depression, schizophrenia, and other neurological disease.

Tryptophan Kynurenine Ratio Targeted Panel

Metabolon in Action

Identify a key pathway in lung cancer epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and drug resistance

Metabolon collaborates with a leading provider of life-saving medicines developed with biotechnology to connect metabolic rewiring with EMT and acquired drug resistance in lung cancer.

Read the Case Study

Identification of Therapeutic Target for a Rare Disease Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM)

The Metabolon Global Discovery Panel identified an increase in prostaglandins in TSC2-deficient cells after estradiol treatment, pointing to COX-2 as a therapeutic target for lymphangioleiomyomatosis.

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Side Effects of Inhaled Glucocorticoids (GCs) for Asthma Treatment

Results from this study showed that inhaled GCs induce significant changes in several biochemical pathways only at high and supratherapeutic doses, thus supporting the safety of low and mid therapeutic doses.

Read the Case Study

Interested in Further Studies?

Why Metabolon?

Once you see the full value of metabolomics, the only remaining question is who does it best? While many laboratories have metabolite profiling or analytical chemistry capabilities, comprehensive metabolomics technologies are extremely rare. Accurate, unbiased metabolite identification across the entire metabolome introduces signal-to-noise challenges that very few labs are equipped to handle. Also, translating massive quantities of data into actionable information is slow, if not impossible, for most because proper interpretation takes two things that are in short supply: experience and a comprehensive database.

Only Metabolon has all four core metabolomics capabilities



Ability to interrogate thousands of metabolites across diverse biochemical space, revealing new insights and opportunities



Ability to integrate the data from different studies into the same dataset, in different geographies, among different patients over time



Ability to inform on proper study design, generate high‐quality data, derive biological insights, and make actionable recommendations



Ability to process hundreds of thousands of samples quickly and cost‐efficiently to service rapidly growing demand

Partner with Metabolon to access:


A library of 5,400+ known metabolites, 2,000 in human plasma, all referenced in the context of biochemical pathways

  • That’s 5x the metabolites of the closest competitor

Unparalleled depth and breadth of experience analyzing and interpreting metabolomic data to find meaningful results

  • 10,000+ projects with hundreds of clients
  • 2,000+ publications covering 500 diseases, including numerous peer-reviewed journals such as Cell, Nature and Science
  • Nearly 40 PhDs in data science, molecular biology, and biochemistry

Using our robust platform and visualization tools, our experts are uniquely able to tell you more about your molecule and develop assay panels to help you zero in on the results you need.

Contact Us

Talk with an expert

Request a quote for our services, get more information on sample types and handling procedures, request a letter of support, or submit a question about how metabolomics can advance your research.

Corporate Headquarters

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Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 110407
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709

+1 (919) 572-1721


1. Bloom B, Jones LI, Freeman G. Summary health statistics for U.S. children: National Health Interview Survey, 2012. National Center for Health Statistics. Vital Health Stat 10(258). 2013.
2. Blackwell DL, Lucas JW, Clarke TC. Summary health statistics for U.S. adults: National Health Interview Survey, 2012. National Center for Health Statistics. Vital Health Stat 10(260). 2014.