Biomedical Research

This project is a 5-year collaborative effort between the Fiehn laboratory and environmental health researchers (Kent Pinkerton, CHE at UC Davis and Jesse Joad, UC Davis Medical School) to characterize the development of asthmatic-type respiratory malfunctions in newborn and young adult rats, caused by environmental tobacco smoke (ETS).

Diagnosis and prediction of individual responses of human patients to pharmaceutical drugs (NIH GM078233 and ARRA RC2)

Our metabolomics platform (comprising GC-TOF mass spectrometry, LC-MS and FT-MS) together with in-house developed databases, open source and commercial software facilitates a comprehensive evaluation of changes in the composition of small molecules in blood plasma and tissue. Led by Dr. Rima Kaddurah-Daouk (Duke University), we are part of a 4-year U.S. national consortium to utilize metabolic signatures to diagnose and predict the responses of individual patients to drug therapies, particularly for bipolar disorders.

Breast cancer biomarkers based on integrated metabolomics (European Union FP7 Health-2007- project 200327)

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. Unlike genetic markers or mRNA transcripts, changes in metabolite levels have not been studied to a great extent with respect of insights into cellular dysregulation of breast cancer cells or use of metabolic profiles to diagnose and predict breast cancer tumor development and progression. The Fiehn laboratory contributes to a 3-year project of an eight-partner European consortium focusing on this disease by delivering standardized metabolic readouts and extension of our current databases. In addition, we  will  work towards  structural annotation of biomarkers using advanced query tools.