COnsortium of METabolomics Studies (COMETS)

COnsortium of METabolomics Studies (COMETS)

Mission and Objectives

The COnsortium of METabolomics Studies (COMETS) is an extramural-intramural partnership that promotes collaboration among prospective cohort studies that follow participants for a range of outcomes and perform metabolomic profiling of individuals. The objectives of COMETS are to:

  • Provide a framework to foster international collaborations among studies sharing common objectives;
  • Provide a forum for the discussion, development and pursuit of new collaborative studies and research directions;
  • Support the development of early career researchers; and
  • Advance the knowledge of the metabolome to improve our understanding of prediction of disease etiology, diagnosis and prognosis.

Based on these objectives, the aim of COMETS is to facilitate an open exchange of ideas, knowledge, and results in order to accelerate the study of metabolomics profiles associated with chronic disease phenotypes (e.g. heart disease, diabetes, cancer).

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Membership Eligibility for Studies

Cohorts must meet the following criteria:

  • Prospective cohort, 100+ participants with blood metabolomics data
  • Identified metabolite data
  • Follow-up for disease, including cancer and non-cancer outcomes
  • Mass-spectrometry platform, preferred; however, NMR data are eligible

COMETS members are expected to comply with the consortium's bylaws.

Membership Categories for Investigators

Consortium membership falls under the 4 categories below. Individuals who are interested in Consortium membership and are not members of the Steering Committee will follow the guidelines and eligibility under associate, affiliate and non-affiliate membership. Consortium members are eligible to propose investigations to the SC for approval.

  • Steering Committee (SC): SC members are the primary representatives of the participating cohort studies (one per cohort) are entitled to vote, participate in Working Groups (WG) and can become WG chairs. Membership is effective upon notification and confirmation of acceptance of the consortium membership application by the current SC.

    Investigators interested in joining COMETS should fill out the form below and e-mail the completed form to Krista Zanetti, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D.

  • Affiliate Member: Affiliate members can be either predoctoral or postdoctoral fellows or trainees who are part of a team led by either a Steering Committee or Consortium Member. They may lead or co-lead a project sponsored by a Steering Committee or Consortium Member and are eligible to transition to Member status upon transition to an independent research position. Affiliate members have no voting rights or eligibility for the Steering Committee.

    Fellows or trainees interested in joining COMETS should contact Krista Zanetti, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D.

  • Associate Member: Associate members are investigators who are affiliated with a COMETS cohort working in the field of metabolomics. Membership requires a nomination by a SC member and is effective upon acceptance by the SC. Associate members are required to maintain active participation in at least one WG and may become WG chairs.

  • Non-Affiliate Member: Non-affiliate membership is available to non-affiliated methodologic experts and requires nomination by a Steering Committee member. Members are further required to maintain active participation in at least one Working Group and may become Working Group chairs. Investigators who are interested in membership require a nomination by a Steering Committee member. Membership is effective upon acceptance by the Steering Committee.

    Investigators interested in becoming an associate or non-affiliate member should fill out the form below and discuss with the Steering Committee member who is nominating you for COMETS membership. After they approve this form, please submit this application along with your CV to Ella Temprosa, Ph.DExternal Web Site Policy. or Krista Zanetti, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D.

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Proposing New COMETS Projects and Collaborations

The 2018 deadlines for submitting proposals are Tuesday, April 10, Friday, August 10 and Monday, December 10. Although investigators can submit proposals at any time throughout the year, they will not be reviewed until after the next deadline closest to the time of submission.

Overview of the review process for COMETS proposals

Submission - Proposals prepared using the "Study Publication and Presentation Proposal Form" are submitted by sending them to Elise Hoover at by the indicated deadline.

  1. Initial Review - This will be completed within three weeks of the submission deadline and will consist of the following steps:
    1. The Proposal Review Chair will make the proposals available to all steering committee members interested in participating in the review. One steering committee member will be assigned to be the primary reviewer for each proposal.
    2. Comments and preliminary scores (1-5, corresponding to the criteria listed below, are due two weeks after the submission deadline.
      1. Approve as is
      2. Approve with modifications
      3. Deny with suggestions for revision
      4. Deny due to overlap with other COMETS ongoing project
      5. Deny due to insufficiently narrow in scope
    3. During the third week, all proposals will be reviewed during a teleconference to which all investigators that submitted proposals will be invited to participate
      1. The primary reviewer for each proposal will lead the discussion of that application. Proposal investigators may be asked to provide additional information about their project.
      2. All steering committee members on the call will vote for a final score for each proposal.
  2. For proposals receiving a 2 (Approve with minor modifications), revisions can be approved by email.
  3. For proposals requiring major revisions or modifications in scope, investigators should submit a revised proposal and explanatory cover letter within 10 days of the review. The revised proposal will be discussed on the next Steering Committee call.

Timeline for 2019 Proposal Submission and Review Cycles

Step Round 1 Round 2 Round 3
Submission Deadline 4/10/2019 8/9/2019 12/9/2019
Comments and preliminary vote deadline 4/25/2019 8/26/2019 12/26/2019
Proposal Review Conference Call 4/26-5/3/2019 8/27-9/6/2019 12/27-1/9/2020
Revised Proposals reviewed by Steering Committee 5/16/2019 9/19/2019 1/16/2020

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COMETS Publications

Yu B, Zanetti KA, Temprosa M, Albanes D, Appel N, Barrios Barrera C, Ben-Shlomo Y, Boerwinkle E, Casas JP, Clish C, Dale C, Dehghan A, Derkach A, Eliassen AH, Elliott P, Fahy E, Gieger C, Gunter MJ, Harada S, Harris T, Herr DR, Herrington D, Hirschhorn JN, Hoover E, Hsing AW, Johansson M, Kelly RS, Meng Khoo C, Kivimäki M, Kristal BS, Langenberg C, Lasky-Su J, Lawlor DA, Lotta LA, Mangino M, Le Marchand L, Mathé, Matthews CE, Menni C, Mucci LA, Murphy R, Oresic M, Orwoll E, Ose J, Pereira AC, Playdon MC, Poston L, Price J, Qi Q, Rexrode K, Risch A, Sampson J, Jie Seow W, Sesso HD, Shah SH, Shu XO, Smith GCS, Sovio U, Stevens VL, Stolzenberg-Solomon R, Takebayashi T, Tillin T, Travis R, Tzoulaki I, Ulrich CM, Vasan RS, Verma M, Wang Y, Wareham NJ, Wong A, Younes N, Zhao H, Zheng W, Moore SC. The Consortium of Metabolomics Studies (COMETS): Metabolomics in 47 Prospective Cohort StudiesExternal Web Site Policy. Am J Epidem. [Epub ahead of print]

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COMETS Analytics

COMETS AnalyticsExternal Web Site Policy is a cloud-based, self-serviced analytic platform developed for consortium-based metabolomics analyses. It is available for anyone to use, but requires registration on the site.

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COMETS Inaugural Meeting

COMETS was established at a meeting that took place at the NCI on October 28-29, 2014, "Think Tank on Metabolomics and Prospective Cohorts: How to Leverage Resources."

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For questions about COMETS or to inquire about becoming a member, contact Krista Zanetti, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D.

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