Michigan Regional Comprehensive Metabolomics Resource Core (MRC2)

The Michigan Regional Comprehensive Metabolomics Resource Core (now Metabolomics Core) is funded by the NIH Common Fund’s Metabolomics program. In 2012, it established a consortium of six Regional Comprehensive Metabolomics Resource Cores (RCMRC)s to serve users across the United States.

The RCMRCs work to increase the national capacity for utilizing metabolomics in biomedical research by:

  • Establishing national standards for metabolomics
  • Increasing national capacity to provide metabolomics profiling and data analysis services to basic, translational, and clinical investigators
  • Fostering collaborative efforts that will advance translational research using metabolomics approaches
  • Facilitating institutional development of pioneering research, metabolomics training, and outreach

Resources and data sets may be found and used at the website developed by the NIH Common Fund Metabolomics Data Repository and Coordinating Center (DRCC):

Compounds may be nominated for synthesis by the Metabolite Standards Synthesis Core (MSSC).

MRC2 Affiliates

The following faculty and staff members are affiliates of the MRC2:

Subramaniam Pennathur, MBBS
Associate Director
Phone: (734) 615-1294
Address: 5309 Brehm, 1000 Wall Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48105-5714

Dr. Pennathur is Associate Director of the Metabolomics Core. Dr. Pennathur works with Dr. Burant in the overall administration of the Core and functions as the director in Dr. Burant’s absence. Along with Dr. Kachman, he works with researchers to choose the appropriate assay and assist with method development and methodology for quantitative analysis. Dr. Pennathur is primarily responsible for acquisition of tools, technology.

Alla Karnovsky, Ph.D.
Promotion and Outreach Program Director and Bioinformatician
Phone: (734) 615-9314
Address: 2044 Palmer Commons Bldg., 100 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2218

Dr. Karnovsky is a Research Assistant Professor of Computational Medicine and Bioinformatics and her research program has a special interest in developing bioinformatics tools for integration of multiscalar data, including metabolomics, working closely with NCIBI. Her group developed a unique tool Metscape, a Cytoscape plug-in designed to visualize metabolites and associated pathways. Dr. Karnovsky works with users to select the proper bioinformatics tools to use for their metabolic analysis and continue the expansion of the numbers of compounds and pathways contained in Metab2Mesh and Metscape. She also leads the development of novel bioinformatics algorithms through which unknown compounds can be identified.

Brian Athey, Ph.D.
Data and Information Technology Core Director
Phone: (734) 615-5774

Dr. Athey’s recent research interests are in the creation and use of bioinformatics pipelines and machine learning methods to radically improve the efficacy of psychiatric pharmacogenomics—allowing patients to take the most effective drug for their illness and suffer the fewest side effects. He is also developing new high-throughput methods to analyze images of genes in the context of the cellular nucleus to better understand the machinery of bioinformatics in context.

Robert Kennedy, Ph.D.
Analytical Core Director
Phone: (734) 615-4363

Dr. Kennedy is the Hobart H. Willard Distinguished University Professor of Chemistry at the University of Michigan. He has expertise in chromatography, electrophoresis, microfluidics, and mass spectrometry. His bioanalytical research is devoted to developing these technologies and applying them to neuroscience, endocrinology, and high-throughput analysis.

George Michailidis, Ph.D.
Statistics and Bioinformatics Core Director

Dr. Michailidis’ research interests include analysis of high-dimensional data, machine learning, network analysis, integration of Omics data, convex optimization, and spatio-temporal modeling.

Bill Duren, M.S., A.B.
Bioinformatics Programmer

Mr. Duren works on development of new methods and tools for the analysis of experimental data generated at the Core. Specifically, he works on the development of MetScape, a user friendly network mapping and pathway analysis software developed at the Core. He is also involved in development of CorrelationCalculator program for building correlation networks as well as the development and maintenance of the databases used by the Core.

Charles Evans, Ph.D.
Research Assistant Professor
Phone: (734) 232-8177
Address: 6321 Brehm, 1000 Wall Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48105-5714

Dr. Evans is a Research Assistant Professor in the Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology and Diabetes (MEND), within the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan. His research relates to the association between exercise capacity and metabolic health, with particular emphasis on its relevance to health concerns including diabetes and obesity. To carry out these studies, Dr. Evans uses the techniques of metabolomics and stable-isotope flux analysis to study, in great detail, the dynamics of cellular metabolism in response to exercise in humans and animal models of human disease. In addition to his biological research interests, Dr. Evans is an analytical chemist by training and pursues development of new techniques and methodologies to enable improved detection and quantitation of biological metabolites using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS).