In the field of proteomics, we aim to identify and quantify all of the proteins expressed in a sample. Mass spectrometry (MS) has emerged as a powerful tool for proteomics; however, front-end processing is a bottleneck in the quest for high-throughput analysis. A typical processing protocol requires protein extraction, reduction, alkylation, digestion, purification, concentration, and separation; these steps require many tedious hours of laboratory time. We are developing microfluidics-based instruments and methods for integrated processing and MS-based analysis of proteins in biofluids (serum, cell lysate, etc.). These methods will streamline proteomics, enabling rapid analysis of thousands of samples simultaneously, which will be useful for basic biology and clinical applications.
Wheeler lab website http://www.chem.utoronto.ca/staff/WHEELER