Retinopathy of Prematurity: An Oxidative Stress Neonatal Disease

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Proteomics is the global study of proteins in an organism or a tissue/fluid and is clinically relevant since most disease states are accompanied by specific alterations in an organism's proteome. This review focuses on the application of proteomics to neonatology with particular emphasis on retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), which is a disease in which oxidative stress plays a key pathophysiological role. Oxidative stress is a physiologically relevant redox imbalance caused by an excess of reactive oxygen (ROS) or reactive nitrogen oxide species (RNOS). A major conclusion of this review is that proteomics may be the optimal technology for studying neonatal diseases such as ROP, particularly in the setting of a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Proteomics has already identified a number of ROP serum biomarkers. This review will also suggest novel therapeutic approaches to ROP and other neonatal oxidative stress diseases (NOSDs) based on a systems medicine approach.