Metabolomics research focuses on the analysis of small (<1.5kDa) molecules (metabolites) and their temporal and systematic variation altered by internal or external factors. In short, metabolomics is the identification and quantification of all metabolites in a biological sample detected by the present technology at a given condition and/or point in time. For NMR, this encompasses about 50 to a few hundred metabolites depending on the matrix analyzed. At the Swedish NMR Centre we have experience of a number of different biological matrices for metabolomics analysis, the majority being human origin (serum/plasma, urine, feces and extracts of different tissues such as muscle, liver and brain) but also including samples from model organisms such as mouse, rat, yeast, insects, macroalgae, mammalian cell cultures and bacteria.
The two dominant analytical techniques in metabolomics is mass spectrometry and NMR. The former is available to researchers in Sweden primarily through the Swedish Metabolomics Centre, which also has a node in Gothenburg in the Chalmers Mass Spectrometry Infrastructure. The Swedish NMR Centre in Gothenburg and Umeå offers NMR-based metabolomics, with access to both expertise in sample collection for solid-state NMR (e.g. biopsies) and for bioliquids, and also support for statistical analysis of collected data is available.