This is a perspective from the peer session on stable isotope labelling and fluxomics at the Australian & New Zealand Metabolomics Conference (ANZMET) held from 30 March to 1 April 2016 at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. This report summarizes the key points raised in the peer session which focused on the advantages of using stable isotopes in modern metabolomics and the challenges in conducting flux analyses. The session highlighted the utility of stable isotope labelling in generating reference standards for metabolite identification, absolute quantification, and in the measurement of the dynamic activity of metabolic pathways. The advantages and disadvantages of different approaches of fluxomics analyses including flux balance analysis, metabolic flux analysis and kinetic flux profiling were also discussed along with the use of stable isotope labelling in in vivo
dynamic metabolomics. A number of crucial technical considerations for designing experiments and analyzing data with stable isotope labelling were discussed which included replication, instrumentation, methods of labelling, tracer dilution and data analysis. This report reflects the current viewpoint on the use of stable isotope labelling in metabolomics experiments, identifying it as a great tool with the potential to improve biological interpretation of metabolomics data in a number of ways.
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