Background: Urine is a promising resource for biomarker research. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate potential urinary biomarkers to monitor the disease activity of ventilator-induced lung injury (VILI).
Methods: In the discovery phase, a label-free data-dependent acquisition (DDA) quantitative proteomics method was used to profile the urinary proteomes of VILI rats. For further validation, the differential proteins were verified by parallel reaction monitoring (PRM)-targeted quantitative proteomics.
Results: In all, 727 high-confidence proteins were identified with at least 1 unique peptide (FDR ≤1%). Compared to the control group, 110 proteins (65 upregulated, 45 downregulated) were significantly changed in the VILI group (1.5-fold change, P<0.05). The canonical pathways and protein-protein interaction analyses revealed that the differentially expressed proteins were enriched in multiple functions, including oxidative stress and inflammatory responses. Finally, thirteen proteins were identified as candidate biomarkers for VILI by PRM validation. Among these PRM-validated proteins, AMPN, MEP1B, LYSC1, DPP4 and CYC were previously reported as lung-associated disease biomarkers. SLC31, MEP1A, S15A2, NHRF1, XPP2, GGT1, HEXA, and ATPB were newly discovered in this study.
Conclusions: Our results suggest that the urinary proteome might reflect the pathophysiological changes associated with VILI. These differential proteins are potential urinary biomarkers for the activity of VILI.