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Using mass photometry to analyze haptoglobin proteoforms

Updated: Feb 19

A new publication from the @HeckLab at Utrecht University features mass photometry as a tool to analyse hundreds of haptoglobin proteoforms and their influence on the scavenging of haemoglobin.


A wealth of genotype-specific proteoforms fine-tunes hemoglobin scavenging by haptoglobin

Tamara S, Franc V, Heck A.J.R.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Jun 2020, 202002483; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2002483117



A wealth of genotype-specific proteoforms fine-tunes hemoglobin scavenging by haptoglobin

Haptoglobin (Hp) is one of the most abundant plasma proteins; it binds with high affinity to hemoglobin (Hb). Thereby Hp protects against the toxic effects of the heme when Hb leaks into plasma from damaged red blood cells. Therefore, serum Hp is an important antioxidant and a clinically important protein, often used as a protein biomarker.


The paper addresses in detail what proteoforms and proteoform assemblies co-occur in serum, and show how they differ in individuals with distinct genotypes. Data obtained using mass photometry, among other analytical methods, reveal in unprecedented detail how these hundreds of Hp proteoforms influence the scavenging of Hb through several distinctive molecular features of Hp genotypes.


Our congratulations to the authors on their amazing work!

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