Overcoming the challenges of implementing high value tests in the clinical lab



MSACL strives to offer a congress experience that values training and mentorship (see travel grants, short courses and Practical Training tracks), and provides avenues by which early-career attendees can gain experience presenting (see Poster Lightning Talks, the Poster Contest, Podium opportunities).

The Meet-a-Mentor program has been developed to create a channel by which early-career attendees can approach, interact and connect with mid- to late-career attendees to share intellect and experience.

Booth and Poster Tours: Mentors browse booths or view posters as they normally do, but with one or more mentees along to observe, participate and learn from experience.

Office Hours: Mentors will be available at tables in the Meet-a-Mentor area of the Exhibit Hall where attendees can sign up to have a 10-15 minute chat about ... anything.

You can sign up at the congress to participate in one or more Meet-a-Mentor activities (i.e., Booth Tour, Poster Tour, Office Hours).

Scheduled Meet-a-Mentor Events

Tuesday 18:00 - 19:00 Meet-a-Mentor: Booth Tours
Exhibit Hall
Wednesday 15:15 - 16:00 Meet-a-Mentor: Poster Tours 1
Exhibit Hall
Wednesday 17:30 - 18:30 Meet-a-Mentor: Office Hours
Exhibit Hall
Thursday 10:15 - 11:00 Meet-a-Mentor: Poster Tours 2
Exhibit Hall

Theodore Alexandrov, PhD
European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and UCSD

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Poster Tour 2 on Thursday @ 1015
Theodore Alexandrov is a group leader at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, the head of the EMBL Metabolomics Core Facility and an Assistant Adjunct Professor at the Skaggs School of Pharmacy, University of California San Diego. The Alexandrov team at EMBL aims to reveal the secrets of metabolism in time and space in tissues and single cells by developing experimental and computational methods. The team unites interdisciplinary scientists from biology, chemistry, and computer science as well as software and machine learning engineers. Theodore Alexandrov is a grantee of an ERC Consolidator project focused on studying metabolism in single cells, as well as of various other European, national, NIH, and industrially-funded projects. He has co-founded and scientifically directed the company SCiLS and has over 70 journal publications and patents in the field of spatial -omics.

Peggi Angel

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
I am an expert in imaging mass spectrometry with specialization in collagen imaging, lipid imaging, and N-glycan imaging. I am more than happy to discuss projects, connect to people within the imaging mass spectrometry community.

Erin Baker, PhD
North Carolina State University

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Poster Tour 1 on Wednesday @ 1515
Dr. Erin Baker is a bioanalytical chemist with more than 20 years experience utilizing ion mobility spectrometry in conjunction with mass spectrometry (IMS-MS) to study environmental and biological systems. In the last 14 years she has worked primarily on IMS-MS applications in the field of proteomics and more recently she has optimized IMS-MS metabolomic, glycomic and lipidomic separations. Her research involves the development and evaluation of high throughput IMS-MS, SPE-IMS-MS and LC-IMS-MS analyses to quickly study numerous samples in a short time period without losing valuable biological information, as well as assessing the number and quality of features detected with IMS-MS for comparison with existing MS platforms. Dr. Baker is also working with informatics teams to design and implement software tools that automatically analyze the complex multidimensional SPE-IMS-MS and LC-IMS-MS data.

Anne Bendt, PhD (Biochem)
Singapore Lipidomics Incubator (SLING)

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
With a MSc in Marine Biotechnology (Greifswald University, Germany) and a PhD in Biochemistry (Cologne University, Germany) in close collaboration with industry, Anne Bendt has always been working on topics which are translatable into applications outside of the laboratory. Driven by her fascination for infectious diseases, she joined the National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2004 to develop lipidomics tools for tuberculosis studies. She is now a Principal Investigator at the Life Sciences Institute, NUS, focussing on translation of mass spec technologies into clinical applications, primarily for lipids and small molecules. Additionally, she is serving as the Associate Director of the Singapore Lipidomics Incubator (SLING) being in charge of operations and commercialization. Anne is passionate about training and education and has made substantial contributions to SLING’s various workshops and the highly successful ‘ic lipid’ training course. She is a co-founder of FeMS, the international 'Females in Mass Spec' initiative.

Amaury Cazenave-Gassiot, PhD
National UNiversity of Singapore

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Research Assistant Prof. Cazenave-Gassiot is an early-career researcher and an expert in mass spectrometry-based lipidomics. He graduated with a PhD in analytical chemistry at the University of Southampton (UK), under the supervision of Dr John Langley, specialising in supercritical fluid chromatography and mass spectrometry. His interest in lipids started while a postdoc in the team of Professor Anthony Postle, still in Southampton. A member of the Singapore Lipidomics Incubator (SLING) since 2009, his research centres on separation sciences, mass spectrometry, and their applications to life sciences, especially lipid biochemistry. He has developed chromatographic and mass spectrometric methods for the identification and quantification of lipids in diverse biological systems.

Tim Collier, PhD
Quest Diagnostics-Cleveland HeartLab

Booth Tour on Tuesday @ 1800
Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Tim Collier is the Associate Scientific Director of Research and Development and Laboratory Operations for Cleveland HeartLab, a Quest Diagnostics Laboratory, where he oversees technical quality for Laboratory Operations and leads a dynamic Research team to develop diagnostic tests based on novel metabolic and protein biomarkers to improve assessment of cardiovascular risk. He holds a B.S. in Chemistry and Ph.D. in Bioanalytical Chemistry from North Carolina State University and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Molecular Oncology and Hematology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO. He has nearly 15 years experience in using mass spectrometry for the analysis and quantification of proteins and peptides, and had developed multiplexed proteomic assays currently in regular clinical use. This is his 7th year attending MSACL US and enjoys meeting and educating new users of mass spectrometry technology.

Mari DeMarco, PhD
University of British Columbia

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Mari DeMarco is a clinical chemist at St Paul's Hospital, and a clinical associate professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver Canada. Her research lab develops strategies for streamlined sample preparation workflows for both qualitative and quantitative mass spectrometric analysis of peptide and protein biomarkers. In addition, a major focus of her laboratory is the development biofluid tests for Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative disorders, and their application to clinical research and patient care.

Rob DeWitte, PhD

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Rob is a scientist who has evolved into a business leader over the course of his career. He has a PhD in theoretical Chemical Physics (Harvard University), but has managed to follow his interests into Pharma R&D (startup & Big Pharma), technologies for drug discovery, platforms for clinical diagnostics (including Cascadion). Most recently, Rob has co-founded Elarex to stabilize vaccines & biologics. Along the way he has been involved in, or responsible for, R&D, Marketing, Strategy, Business Development, QARA, Manufacturing, Finance, HR and General Management. Rob also supports young life science companies with strategic advice and access to financing. Join Rob in his office hour if you’d like to talk about alternative careers. There are a lot of different paths that lead to interesting opportunities!

Christina Ferreira, PhD
Purdue University

Booth Tour on Tuesday @ 1800
I work (have fun) as a Lipidomics Research Scientist at the Metabolite Profiling Facility at Bindley Bioscience Center, Purdue University. I started my career as an embryologist and worked for some time as R&D coordinator for bovine in vitro fertilization and cloning in a company. There, back in 2006, I met for the first time MS when trying to get a chemical profile of culture media for quality control purposes. Since then MS became my passion. I worked with Dr. Marcos Eberlin in Brazil and Dr. Graham Cooks at Purdue for post-doctoral trainings.
Part of my time has been dedicated to research project management and I use some of the project management body of knowledge (PMBOK) tools.
My current interests include biomarker discovery projects using lipidomics by multiple reaction monitoring (MRM)-profiling and high throughput DESI-MS analysis.

Andrea Geistanger, PhD
Roche Diagnostics GmbH

Poster Tour 2 on Thursday @ 1015
Andrea Geistanger is Head of Systems Data Analytics, at Roche Diagnostics in Germany. Her department of biostatisticians supports system and assay development through the whole life cycle of Roche’s cobas products. Her team is involved in the early development phases, including biomarker search projects with machine learning and multivariate statistics analysis. During product development phases, Andrea’s data analysts support scientists in experimental planning with Design of experiments, as well as in the experiment of validation studies according to regulatory requirements. Furthermore, they develop standardization schemes and calibration concepts for cobas analyzers. Throughout the development phase, software tools are designed and developed as needed. These programs are also made available to a broader community through open software projects.
Andrea Geistanger studied mathematics and economics, however during her PhD thesis in statistics, back in 2006, she immersed in standardization and traceability topics of diagnostic assays, by developing the data analysis scheme of the IFCC HbA1c standardization network. Since then the diversity of data science topics for diagnostic assays kept her busy and excited.

Russ Grant, PhD
Lab Corp

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Russell Grant, PhD received his PhD in chromatographic and mass spectrometric technologies from Swansea University in 1995. He continued his scientific training in various industrial settings which have included: Senior scientist at GSK, Principal scientist at Cohesive Technologies, Technical Director at Eli Lilly and Director of Mass Spectrometry at Esoterix Endocrinology.

Dr. Grant has pioneered the use of direct injection technologies, chromatographic systems multiplexing, utility of automation and new analytical platforms for utility in bioanalytical applications. Dr Grant has extensive experience in developing, validating and launching clinical tests using Mass Spectrometry. Dr Grant is regarded as an expert in many facets of the clinical mass spectrometry discipline. His contributions including a significant degree of teaching (MSACL, ASMS, AACC, FDA), chairing usergroups and workshops (ASMS, MSACL) and contributing heavily or chairing guidance documents (FDA, CLSI). His research goals are focused upon improvements in automation, systems integration, throughput, sensitivity and quality of LC-MS/MS analytical systems for all clinically relevant biomarkers and therapeutics.

Shannon Haymond, PhD
Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Hi! I am Dr. Shannon Haymond, the Director of Mass Spectrometry and the Vice Chair for Computational Pathology at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children?s Hospital of Chicago. I am an Associate Professor of Pathology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

My current interests include automating data workflows in mass spectrometry labs and improving the capacity and application of data analytics within laboratory medicine. That said, I especially enjoy meeting early career colleagues and am happy to share my experiences on a broad array of topics.

Daniel Holmes, MD
St. Paul’s Hospital

Booth Tour on Tuesday @ 1800
Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Daniel Holmes earned his undergraduate degree in Chemical Physics from the University of Toronto. He went to medical school at the University of British Columbia (UBC) where he also did his residency in Medical Biochemistry. He is a Clinical Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at UBC and Division Head of Clinical Chemistry at St. Paul's Hospital in Vancouver. Interests include laboratory medicine informatics – particularly using the R language, clinical endocrinology with a focus on secondary hypertension, clinical lipidology and clinical mass spectrometry. Assay development efforts in the last five years have focused on novel use of mass spectrometry for quantitative protein mass spectrometry and for specialized endocrine testing.

Andy Hoofnagle, MD, PhD
University of Washington

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Dr. Hoofnagle’s laboratory focuses on the precise quantification of recognized protein biomarkers in human plasma using LC-MRM/MS. In addition, they have worked to develop novel assays for the quantification of small molecules in clinical and research settings. He also likes to hike, ski, cook, and find a small corner in the room in which to nibble pieces of bacon.

Adam Rosebrock, PhD
Stony Brook School of Medicine

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Poster Tour 2 on Thursday @ 1015
Poster Tour 1 on Wednesday @ 1515
Booth Tour on Tuesday @ 1800
Dr. Adam Rosebrock comes to clinical mass spectrometry from the bench-science world of metabolomics. The Rosebrock lab uses a combination of genetics, biochemistry, and analytical chemistry (including mass spectrometry) to understand genetic regulation of metabolic phenotypes. As a tool-builder at heart, Adam's lab actively develops new methods and approaches for small-molecule chromatographic separation and MS data analysis. As an educator, Adam is always happy to discuss practical and theoretical aspects from biology through instrument design in the exhibit hall or fireside.

Chris Shuford, PhD

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Chris Shuford, Ph.D., is Associate Vice President and Technical Director for research and development at Laboratory Corporation of America in Burlington, North Carolina. Chris received his B.S. in Chemistry & Physics at Longwood University and obtained his Ph.D. in Bioanalytical Chemistry from North Carolina State University under the tutelage of Professor David Muddiman, where his research focused on applications of nano-flow chromatography for multiplexed peptide quantification using protein cleavage coupled with isotope dilution mass spectrometry (PC-IDMS). In 2012, Chris joined LabCorp’s research and development team where his efforts have focused on development of high-flow chromatographic methods (>1 mL/min) for multiplexed and single protein assays for clinical diagnostics.

Judy Stone, PhD
Univ. of Calif. San Francisco Health

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Booth Tour on Tuesday @ 1800
Judy will lead a Booth Tour for LC-MS 101 short course attendees & all other interested parties. This tour will highlight and build on discussions from the course.

Judy Stone served as Asst. Professor and Assoc. Director of Clinical Chemistry at the University of Connecticut Health Center, as Asst. Professor and Director of the Core, Immunology and Toxicology Laboratories at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center; and has worked with mass spectrometry at Specialty Laboratories, San Francisco General Hospital, Kaiser Regional Laboratories in Northern California and the Clinical Mass Spectrometry Laboratory, Center for Advanced Laboratory Medicine, Univ. of Calif. San Diego Health System. She currently works in the automated chemistry STAT laboratory, Parnassus Campus, at Univ. of California, San Francisco Health.

Her research interests are in mass spectrometry applications and automation for clinical toxicology and endocrinology. She teaches, with a team of colleagues, a two day short course on “Getting Started with Quantitative LC-tandem MS in the Diagnostic Laboratory” at the MSACL meetings in the U.S. and Europe. She is a member of AACC and ASMS and serves as Chair, Board of Editors for the Mass Spectrometry Feature Series, Clinical Laboratory News. She is interested in developing a certification program for basic clinical mass spectrometry.

Jennifer Van Eyk, PhD
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

Office Hours on Wednesday @ 1730
Poster Tour 1 on Wednesday @ 1515
The new Advanced Clinical BioSystems Research Institute’s motto is “from discovery to patient care” underlies the essence and foundation of our research. Our research focuses i) on understanding the molecular mechanism underlying acute and chronic disease and the development of precision therapies and ii) in the development of clinically robust circulating biomarkers for personalization of medical care. The central philosophy of our laboratory is that compelling biological and clinical questions drive innovation through development, optimization and adaption of proteomic technologies, functional analysis, and large-scale data handling. We specialize in developing robust technological pipelines and automation systems to precisely quantify proteins and their post-translational modifications (PTM) in disease pathways. This includes understanding interplay between competing PTMs like phosphorylation and multiple oxidative modifications. Our group uses automation in sample preparation to allow for high-throughput and robust MS analysis, which includes discovery and the novel approach, Data independent acquisition-MS (sometimes known as SWATH) that allows complete and reproducible analysis of 1000s of proteins in 100s of samples. As well, absolute quantification of key targets can be quick and cost effective via ultra-sensitive ELISA platforms (e.g. Quanterix) or multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) assay, a targeted MS-based quantitative method, for tracking multidimensional signaling pathways in tissue and body fluids. Based on this, we are expanding to develop the Cedars Sinai Precision Biomarker Labs which consists of a population scale service laboratory and also a CLIA laboratory to move novel and established assays through clinical validation to application.