The Great Human Protein Hunt of Shadowy Chromosome 19

UNAM hunts dark proteins in the human cell's “Manhunt,” decoding chromosome 19's secrets for personalized medicine. From cancer clues to disease diagnosis, their discoveries pave the way for a future where each person's proteins guide their treatment.

The Great Human Protein Hunt of Shadowy Chromosome 19
UNAM scientists track shadowy proteins, inching closer to personalized medicine's dawn.

In the bustling metropolis of the human cell, a vast network of proteins orchestrates the symphony of life. But among these tireless workers, a shadowy guild remains – the “dark proteome,” proteins with unknown functions whose roles remain shrouded in mystery. UNAM, the National Autonomous University of Mexico, has joined forces with a global detective squad, the Human Proteome Project (HPP), to shed light on these enigmatic figures, specifically those lurking within chromosome 19.

For over a decade, the HPP has been on a relentless pursuit, a chromosomal “Manhunt” of sorts. From a meager 13,588 proteins identified in 2011, they've now apprehended a staggering 18,467 suspects, closing in on 93.5% of the human proteome's total population. This, as UNAM researcher Sergio Manuel Encarnación Guevara, the mastermind behind the Mexican consortium's proteomics lab, proclaims, is the project's crowning achievement.