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  • Hi Angela,

    My entire PhD project was based on transcriptome analysis. My thesis research was to understand the physiological differences of emerald ash borer feeding on different ash trees. From my expereince performing a transcriptome study proved very useful as I could see some global patterns of physiological differences. Also,given that the insect was a non-model organism, having its transcriptome sequenced provided a starting point to answer many questions. I also included metabolomics component into my research and found correspondence to some extent, but I cannot make solid conclusions as I'm missing the proteomic snapshot. 

    This said, I strongly feel that having different approaches to study at nucleic acid, protein and metabolite level would be very important to derive a meaningful conclusions for the observation.

     

  • In general, -omic methods can't substitute for good experimental design. So a well-designed difference/comparative experiment can show changes in transcript levels that correlate with something intelligible. For example, I think comparing transcription profiles with/without treatment with a known hormone is a reasonable starting point towards understanding the physiological response to exogeneously-administered hormone. But one couldn't prove something mechanistic from one such study -- follow-up experiments are needed to substantiate any initial interpretations.

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