How the SOMAscan assay compares to other proteomics platforms

The SOMAscan assay offers an unmatched combination of characteristics, including multiplexing ability, low sample volume requirements, high throughput, excellent sensitivity, specificity, and reproducibility. While none of these attributes is unique by itself, this combination makes the SOMAscan assay the most productive proteomic tool available.

Quantitatively, the SOMAscan Assay, while generally equal to or better than a single ELISA in terms of sensitivity and sample throughput, is superior to other technologies in that it has:

  • A larger number of analytes measured. >1300 compared to only up to a few hundred at most in the largest multiplex ELISA commercially available.
  • Smaller sample volume requirements. The SOMAscan assay requires only 65 µL of sample (150 µL requested) for >1300 analytes while other multiplex technologies require close to 1 mL to test many fewer analytes.
  • Superior reproducibility. The SOMAscan assay offers a median % CV for >1300 analytes of ~5% compared to about 5-20% CV average in other technologies.
  • Large dynamic range. ~8 logs.
  • Identification and exclusion of sample handling markers from the analysis.
  • Throughput of hundreds of samples a day, far greater than possible with mass spectrometry.

In addition, SOMAmer reagents themselves demonstrate superior characteristics, including a high success rate in synthesizing reagents to specific targets and reproducibility of their manufacture. These proprietary binding reagents improve assay performance in the breadth of available analytes that can be detected on the SOMAscan assay menu and the relative ease in improving the platform by substituting better binding reagents as they are discovered. Other technologies, based on biologically derived binding reagents, are less flexible.