An International Symposium of the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities

Bridging Topic Speakers

Integrated Core Model

Professor Claudia Neuhauser,  PhD
Director of Research Computing in the Office of the Vice President for Research,
overseeing the University of Minnesota Informatics Institute (UMII) and the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute (MSI).

UMII fosters and accelerates data-intensive research across all disciplines in the University and develops partnership with industry. MSI provides high-performance computing resources to the University. Dr.Neuhauser’s research is at the interface of mathematics and biology, and focuses on the analysis of ecological and evolutionary models and the development of statistical methods in biomedical applications. She has been the Director of Graduate Studies of the Biomedical Informatics and Computational Biology graduate program since 2008. Between 2008 and 2013, she served as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Minnesota Rochester (UMR). Prior to moving to UMR, she was Professor and Head in the department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Dr. Neuhauser is a Distinguished McKnight University Professor, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor, and Morse-Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor. She held faculty positions at the University of Southern California, the University of Wisconsin Madison, and the University of California Davis. She is currently a faculty member in the department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, the department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics, and the department of Computer Science and Engineering. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and a fellow of the American Mathematical Society (AMS).

Imaging Mass Spectrometry

Professor Garry Nolan, PhD
Rachford and Carlota A. Harris Professor
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
Stanford University School of Medicine

Dr. Nolan trained with Leonard Herzenberg (for his Ph.D.) and Nobelist Dr. David Baltimore (for postdoctoral work for the first cloning/characterization of NF-?B p65/ RelA and the development of rapid retroviral production systems). He has published over 180 research articles and is the holder of 20 US patents, and has been honored as one of the top 25 inventors at Stanford University.

Dr. Nolan is the first recipient of the Teal Innovator Award (2012) from the Department of Defense (a $3.3 million grant for advanced studies in ovarian cancer), the first recipient of an FDA BAAA, for "Bio-agent protection" grant, $3 million, from the FDA for a "Cross-Species Immune System Reference", and received the award for "Outstanding Research Achievement in 2011" from the Nature Publishing Group for his development of CyTOF applications in the immune system. Dr. Nolan has new efforts in the study of Ebola, having developed instrument platforms to deploy in the field in Africa to study Ebola samples safely with the need to transport them to overseas labs (funded by a new $3.5 million grant from the FDA).

Management for Scientists, Part 1: Core Business & Graduate Education Partnership

Sarah H. Baum, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
University of Washington

Dr. Baum's primary research interests lie in understanding how the brain takes in such an abundant amount of information, filters it, and then uses this information to make sense of our surrounding world. Furthermore, Dr. Baum is interested in how changes to the neural substrates of sensory perception affect how we experience the world. To do this she has primarily relied on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), which provides a compelling way to investigate the relationship between neural processing and perception because it allows for non-invasive investigation of both neural structure and function in humans. Dr. Baum's graduate work examined neural correlates of audiovisual speech processing in aphasia and healthy aging. Currently she has a more translational focus exploring how differences in neural processing of sensory information affect our perception of the external world, particularly in developmental disorders like autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Recently Dr. Baum has become interested in understanding deficits in sensory and cognitive processing through the lens of variability, which may provide insight into why some individuals with ASD are more susceptible to perceptual deficits than others, or why treatment is effective for only a certain percentage of a patient population. Dr. Baum has over 7 years of research experience in neuroscience and cognitive psychology, including both her own personal research and mentoring both undergraduate and graduate students. Over Dr. Baum's professional career she has developed excellent communication skills, both in peer-reviewed publications and invited presentations at national and international conferences. Research has taught her to be very resourceful and to thrive in both independent, self-directed work as well as initiating and maintaining productive collaborative relationships.

Kevin P. Weller
Flow Cytometry Shared Resource Director
Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Mr. Weller possess almost 20 years of experience using flow cytometry instruments and developing and using a myriad of applications relating to this technology. Beginning with his early undergraduate research at Montana State University, Mr. Weller used flow cytometry to manipulate, track and measure cell homing in in vivo xenogeneic animal models. He was recruited into the biotechnology industry immediately following graduation to continue using his expertise in flow cytometry to identify, quantify and sort pluripotent hematopoietic stem cells from animal tissues. Mr. Weller was a key member of a team that processed, flow sorted and then transplanted human hematopoietic stem cells into multiple myeloma patients as part of a Phase II FDA clinical trial (Systemix, Inc). He has worked for the leading manufacturer of flow cytometer instrumentation and reagents (BD Biosciences) in research, development and marketing capacities. While doing so, Mr. Weller was involved with development of cutting edge advances for both flow cytometry reagents and instruments. At the University of Illinois at Chicago Mr. Weller performed a number of roles including Manager of a Flow Cytometry Core while attending graduate school and continuing my hematology/oncology research, which heavily involved flow cytometry. Mr. Weller is passionately dedicated to his continuing work in this field at Vanderbilt Medical Center, where he has developed a thriving Flow Cytometry Core and trained hundreds of researchers at all levels to use and maximize results from this technology. In addition to his role leading this Core laboratory, Mr. Weller teaches a graduate level course on flow cytometric techniques to students who are seeking to expand their all-around expertise. Mr. Weller has dedicated his professional career to the field of flow cytometry and hopes to have a significant and lasting contribution to this field of science as his legacy.


Electron cryo-microscopy (cryo-EM)

Professor Dorit Hanein PhD
Bioinformatics and Structural Biology Program
Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discover Institute

Electron cryo-microscopy (cryo-EM) has grown to be a powerful imaging technique applicable to almost any kind of specimen, is parsimonious in its material requirements, and allows imaging of large macromolecular assemblies close to their physiological environment. Cryo-EM provides the means to determine three-dimensional (3D) structures of pleiomorphic macromolecular assemblies in fully hydrated state, close to their native environment. Using a hybrid approach, Hanein and collaborators combine the generated 3D maps of the assemblies with high resolution information such as that derived from atomic resolution structures of their components, yeast two-hybrid screening, mutagenesis, biochemical and biophysical data to link structural correlates to functional outputs.

Platinum Sponsors of the ABRF