It was not surprising to David Wishart that it took awhile for people to suss out the importance of the news from Edmonton, Alberta, early this year, where a Canadian team completed the first draft of the human metabolome. “Metabolome is a word that no one’s heard of,” Wishart says. But once he tells people that it’s really an extension of clinical chemistry, they’ve been much more impressed. “Its potential for disease diagnosis is much closer to reality than some of the things that will come from the genome,” he adds.

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