In the post-genomic era, 'omic' technology, and marketing claims to match, promise to understand the biology of various diseases. Metabolomics seeks to look at the chemical fingerprints that cellular processes leave behind and does so through characterization of the small molecule metabolites.
Researchers have been using biological fluids to measure the health of people since the 1940s but it was done before that in both Europe and Asia. Doctors in the middle ages sometimes kept, urine 'charts' which linked urine issues to medical conditions. Chromatography made it more scientific in the modern era and now companies using metabolomic technologies hope to go beyond basic research into chemical data and chemical compounds to the scientific community and enable disease identification and characterization. Tools are important because different tissues and biofluids serve different functions and have different metabolic roles.
The market for metabolomic data analysis tools and software is increasing at a high rate. Metabolomics may allow pharmaceutical companies to stretch their R&D efforts by improving efficiency in target discovery and validation, mode-of-action, and toxicology studies. There has been a significant global growth in biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries in the last decade and the market is expected to have a double-digit growth rate in the coming years.
Biomarker discovery services and increased need for toxicity testing are driving the metabolomics market. Nutraceuticals, plant genomics, nutri-genomics, and systems biology are some high growth and emerging application areas that are expected to drive the global market of metabolomics in coming years.
The global market for metabolomics in terms of revenue is estimated to be worth $343 million in 2012 and is expected to reach $1.5 billion by 2017, growing at a CAGR of 35% from 2012 to 2017.