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GBMSDG Meeting Archives

November 10, 2011

Corporate Night

Guest Speaker
Neil Kelleher, Ph.D.
Molecular Biosciences, Chemistry Department,
and Feinberg School of Medicine

Building a Framework for Proteomics to Support the Weight of Investment

Marriott - Kendall Square
Two Cambridge Center, 50 Broadway
Cambridge, MA 02142

About Dr. Kelleher

After finishing his joint graduate work with Tadhg Begley and Fred McLafferty at Cornell University in 1997, Neil Kelleher moved to the laboratory of Christopher Walsh at Harvard Medical School. This training in high performance mass spectrometry and enzymology explains much of the research performed by his independent laboratory over the last decade at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. In 2010 the Kelleher Group relocated to Northwestern University where the three main sub-groups continue working in the areas of Top Down Proteomics, Natural Products Biosynthesis/Discovery, and Chromatin Biology. The Kelleher Group is recognized as a significant force in each of these three areas. Kelleher has been successful in driving both technology development and applications of high performance mass spectrometry at the interface of chemistry and biology. Kelleher has about 150 publications, carries an H-factor of 39, and provides ProSight software via the web to over 600 labs around the world. The core of the Kelleher Team is built around expertise in complex mixture analysis using Fourier-Transform Mass Spectrometry for targeted applications in proteomics and natural products research. Neil’s group has a track record built up involving protein separations, mass spectrometric hardware, and success in software development to harness the value of complex data. Kelleher harbors specific interests in the biosynthesis and discovery of polyketides and non-ribosomally produced peptides. Further themes of the Kelleher laboratory include using intact proteins for efficient detection of their post-translational modifications, with specific interests in chromatin and cancer biology.

Neil is also the Director at the Proteomics Center of Excellence (PCE) at Northwestern University, which focuses on the qualitative and quantitative detection of as many cellular components as possible at the protein level. The center will implement known technologies for “Bottom Up”, but emphasize the philosophy of ‘precision proteomics,’ which uses high performance mass spectrometry to achieve protein identifications with very high confidence. Quantitation of protein expression and confident assignment of post-translational modifications is also done within a highly collaborative framework. The Center will also develop next-generation proteomics using intact proteins (i.e., the “Top Down” approach) and efficiently translate this frontier approach to Chicago-area scientists. The PCE will bridge the usual performance gap between top proteomics research laboratories and typical university core facilities. The PCE will use a diversity of commercial and custom sample handling approaches, mass spectrometers, and software to apply high performance and cutting-edge proteomics to a variety of cell lines, tissues, and mammalian tissues/fluids.