Neil L. Kelleher
SOFTWARE TO ENABLE A NEW PHILOSOPHY OF PROTEIN ANALYSIS BY MASS SPECTROMETRY
Professor Kelleher’s research combines computer science, a completely sequenced genome, and advanced mass spectrometry to better determine protein-level information, such as post-translational modifications. During his Center appointment, he and his group are constructing a software suite with the goal of customizing all aspects of identification and characterization of intact proteins, a currently unsolved problem in the field of proteomics. This software is crucial to his group’s work with yeast and human cell lines, where gene processing and proteins are far more complex than in simple bacteria.
With the recent realization that humans have “only” about 35,000 genes, it is clear that progress in postgenomic bioengineering and biomedicine requires further fundamental insights into biology at the protein level. Some of these insights will involve increased understanding of post-translational modifications to proteins; Professor Kelleher and his team aim to help collect and understand the required data.