Measuring enzyme activity in single cells
Seemingly identical cells can differ in their biochemical state, function and fate, and this variability plays an increasingly recognized role in organism-level outcomes. Cellular heterogeneity arises in part from variation in enzyme activity, which results from interplay between biological noise and multiple cellular processes. As a result, single-cell assays of enzyme activity, particularly those that measure product formation directly, are crucial. Recent innovations have yielded a range of techniques to obtain these data, including image-, flow- and separation-based assays. Research to date has focused on easy-to-measure glycosylases and clinically-relevant kinases. Expansion of these techniques to a wider range and larger number of enzymes will answer contemporary questions in proteomics and glycomics, specifically with respect to biological noise and cellular heterogeneity.
Journal: - Volume 29, Issue 5, May 2011, Pages 222–230