In many complex diseases, such as immuno-inflammatory diseases, the cause as well as the underlying molecular mechanisms and processes in pathogenesis are not completely understood yet. It is also evident that diseases are manifested in a variety of manners at the molecular level. Thus, these molecular changes in pathogenesis can be the result as well as the cause of a disease. OMICS-analyses aim to illuminate the underlying mechanism-of-action and interpret these in a meaningful manner so a to identify and develop new therapeutic targets as well as biomarkers.

High-throughput and high-resolution technologies such as next-generation sequencing, mass spectrometry and various array-based technologies are used to generate holistic profiles (lipidomes, proteomes, metabolomes, hence the term “OMICS”) of the examined samples (e.g., from patient versus volunteer) and to compare these.

Biomarkers are used in medicine, for example, to diagnose a disease state, to predict disease progression as well as to predict treatment success.


Core competencies:

  • Preanalytics / Cell isolation
  • Multidimensional flow cytometry
  • Lipidome analyses applying mass spectrometry
  • Affinity-based targeted proteome analyses
  • Metabolome analyses applying mass spectrometry
  • DNA methylation analyses
  • Gene expression analyses using microfluidic high-throughput qPCR

OMICS-technology application in preclinical and clinical studies

The appropriate OMICS-technologies are applied dependent on the scientific problem that needs to be addressed. The generated data are examined, for example, multivariate analyses to identify potential biomarkers which are validated by alternative methods. The fields of application include:

  • Biomarkers to predict disease and outcome
  • Surrogate markers for efficacy and safety
  • Identification of risk markers
  • Patient stratification and enrichment

COVIMMUN - "Omics"-based immunome analysis for prediction of acute COVID-19 disease progression and early detection of long-term effects

What is the risk of developing a severe COVID-19 disease after SARS-CoV-2 infection? Can possible long-term damage and subsequent diseases be detected at an early stage and prevented therapeutically? The Fraunhofer ITMP project »COVIMMUN» deals with these questions in close cooperation with the University Hospital Frankfurt and Fraunhofer IAIS and IGD. The patient-individual immunome of COVID-19 patients in the acute disease phase and during subsequent long-term observation is analyzed in detail using OMICS technologies. The aim is to identify molecular biomarkers that indicate whether there is a particular risk of COVID-19 disease progression or the development of long-term damage and secondary complications, in order to be able to initiate early and purposefully preventive or therapeutic measures, if necessary.

Partner: University Hospital Frankfurt, Fraunhofer IAIS, Fraunhofer IGD

Additional information

OrgaProtect – Development of NGS- and qPCR-based approaches for high resolution detection of smallRNA signatures for the early diagnosis of serious organ manifestations in immune-mediated diseases

This project (HA project no. 933/20-90) is financed with funds of LOEWE – Landes-Offensive zur Entwicklung Wissenschaftlich-ökonomischer Exzellenz, Förderlinie 3: KMU-Verbundvorhaben (State Offensive for the Development of Scientific and Economic Excellence).

Molecular biomarkers are being investigated for three immuno-mediated diseases in this industrial cooperation using state-of-the-art approaches. Systemic lupus erythematosus, a chronic inflammatory disease of connective tissue, has a high risk of heart and kidney failure. Systemic sclerosis, on the other hand, carries the risk of lung failure. The third disease, macrophage activation syndrome, causes serious complications, especially in young patients with rheumatic diseases.

The aim of the OrgaProtect project is to develop blood-based in vitro diagnostics to detect insidious deteriorating organ damage at an early stage in order to be able to counteract with a therapeutic intervention as early as possible.

Partner: GenXPro GmbH, Inno-train Diagnostik GmbH

Additional information

Generation of three-dimensional patient profiles and immunological maps for the development of individualized therapies of immuno-mediated diseases using psoriasis vulgaris (PsO), psoriasis arthritis (PsA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) as paradigms

The aim of this project is to characterize in detail the immunome of patients diagnosed with PsA, PsO or RA using OMICS technologies, in order to combine the OMICS-based data with the clinical patient-related data. The pooling and combination of the data shall lead to "immunological maps" which will be generated by applying data bionics, machine learning and artificial intelligence. In clinical routine, these immunological maps shall provide rapid and early supportive information for decision-making regarding the pros and cons of a therapy. Furthermore, the immunological maps visualize and combine across all methods used the immunological characteristics and parameters which are associated with the immune response and disease state.

Partners: Johanna-Quandt-Stiftung, Johanna Quandt Jubiläums-Fonds, University Hospital Frankfurt, Fraunhofer IAIS, Fraunhofer IGD

Additional Information

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