David R. Walt is Robinson Professor of Chemistry and professor of biomedical engineering at Tufts University and is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute professor. Dr. Walt served as chemistry department chairman at Tufts from 1989 to 1996. His laboratory applies micro- and nanotechnologies to urgent biological problems (such as the analysis of genetic variation and the behavior of single cells), single-molecule detection, and the practical application of arrays for diagnostics and the detection of explosives, chemical and biological warfare agents, and food and waterborne pathogens. Dr. Walt is the founding scientist of Illumina, Inc., and has been a director and chairman of its Scientific Advisory Board since 1998. He is also the founding scientist of Quanterix Corporation and is a director and the chairman of its Scientific Advisory Board. He serves on many government advisory panels and boards and on the editorial advisory board of numerous journals. He is a member of the Defense Sciences Research Council, a high-level advisory group for the U.S. Department of Defense and is a member of the Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology of the National Academy of Sciences. From 1996 to 2003 he served as executive editor of Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology. Dr. Walt has published over 250 papers and holds more than 60 patents. He has received numerous national and international awards and honors for his fundamental and applied work in the field of optical sensors and arrays, including the American Chemical Society’s 2010 National Award for Creative Invention. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological
Engineering, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He received a B.S. in chemistry from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. in chemical biology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
Kiyoko F. Aoki-Kinoshita received her B.S. and M.S. degrees in computer science from Northwestern University simultaneously in 1996. She received her doctorate in computer engineering from Northwestern in 1999. She was employed at BioDiscovery, Inc., in Los Angeles as a senior software engineer before moving to Kyoto, Japan, to work as a postdoctoral researcher at the Bioinformatics Center, Institute of Chemical Research, Kyoto University. There she developed various algorithmic and data-mining methods for analyzing glycan structure data accumulated in the KEGG GLYCAN database, which have been published in numerous journal papers. She then joined the Department of Bioinformatics in the Faculty of Engineering at Soka University in Tokyo and is now an associate professor of bioinformatics. She is also involved in several research projects pertaining to glycan functions based on their structure as well as recognition patterns of glycan structures by other proteins and even viruses. One of these projects is the development of a Web resource called RINGS (Resource for INformatics of Glycomes at Soka), which is intended to freely provide on the Internet many of the informatics algorithms and methods that have been published in the literature. These and other methods have been summarized in her book Glycome Informatics: Methods and Applications (CRC Press, 2009). Dr. Aoki-Kinoshita is a board member of the Japanese Society for Bioinformatics and the Japanese Society for Carbohydrate Research.
Brad Bendiak is an associate professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, where he teaches cell and developmental biology. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge in 1983. Dr. Bendiak’s laboratory focuses on understanding the enzymes that synthesize cell surface carbohydrates, the glycosyltransferases. In addition, characterization of the carbohydrate structures themselves and development of new methods for elucidation of these molecules are ongoing. This includes new methods in higher-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and fundamental studies in the fragmentation of carbohydrate molecules by mass spectrometry, with the overall goal being to assign the detailed structures of these complex molecules unambiguously. His laboratory is also interested in a series of glycosyltransferases involved in synthesis and branching of novel core structures of glycoprotein oligosaccharides and in better understanding the control of expression and the role of these enzymes in different tissues. For structural elu-
cidation of glycoprotein oligosaccharides, his laboratory uses high-field NMR, mass spectrometry, and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, in addition to specific methods of chemical degradation that also are topics of research by the lab. Recent work has dealt with developments of gas-phase methods for separation and differentiation of oligosaccharide isomers.
Carolyn R. Bertozzi is the T. Z. and Irmgard Chu Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and a professor of molecular and cell biology at the University of California, Berkeley, an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and senior faculty scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She completed her undergraduate degree in chemistry from Harvard University in 1988 and her Ph.D. in chemistry from UC Berkeley in 1993. After completing postdoctoral work at the University of California, San Francisco, in the field of cellular immunology, she joined the UC Berkeley faculty in 1996. Dr. Bertozzi’s research interests span the disciplines of chemistry and biology, with an emphasis on studies of cell surface glycosylation pertinent to disease states. Her laboratory focuses on developing chemical tools to probe changes in cell surface glycosylation associated with cancer, inflammation, and bacterial infection and on exploiting this information for development of diagnostic and therapeutic approaches. In addition, her group develops nanoscience-based technologies for probing cell function and methods for protein engineering. Dr. Bertozzi has been recognized with many honors and awards for both her research and teaching accomplishments. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina. Some awards of note include the Lemelson–Massachusetts Institute of Technology award for inventors, the Whistler Award, the Ernst Schering Prize, a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, the American Chemical Society Award in Pure Chemistry, the Tetrahedron Young Investigator Award, and the Irving Sigal Young Investigator Award of the Protein Society. Her efforts in undergraduate education have earned her a UC Berkeley Distinguished Teaching Award and the Donald Sterling Noyce Prize for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.
Geert-Jan Boons received his M.Sc. in chemistry in 1987 and his Ph.D. in synthetic carbohydrate chemistry in 1991 from the State University of Leiden (The Netherlands). Prior to joining the faculty at the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center at the University of Georgia in 1998, he spent 7 years in the United Kingdom, first as a postdoctoral fellow at Imperial College and the University of Cambridge and then as a lecturer and professor at the University of Birmingham. In 2003, Dr. Boons was awarded
the Carbohydrate Research Award for Creativity in Carbohydrate Science by the European Carbohydrate Association. Also in 2003 he was elected chairman for the 2005 Gordon Research Conference on Carbohydrates. He serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Carbohydrate Chemistry, Advances in Carbohydrate Chemistry and Biochemistry, Glycoconjugate Journal, and the European Journal of Organic Chemistry. In 2004, Dr. Boons received the Horace Isbell Award by the Division of Carbohydrate Chemistry of the American Chemical Society and was appointed Franklin Professor of Chemistry at the College of Arts and Sciences, University of Georgia. Research by the Boons Group deals with the synthesis and biological functions of carbohydrates and glycoconjugates. The diverse topics to which the group has made significant contributions include the development of new and better methods for synthesizing exceptionally complex molecules, the use of new methods in the synthesis and study of properties of complex carbohydrates of increasing size and complexity, the development of synthetic cancer and bacterial vaccines, the design and synthesis of glycosidase inhibitors, and the use of synthetic compounds for the study of innate immunity.
Alan Darvill received his B.S. in plant biology in 1973 from Wolverhampton Polytechnic (England) and his Ph.D. in plant physiology in 1976 from the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth. He founded the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center (CCRC), at the University of Georgia, with Peter Albersheim in September 1985. Dr. Darvill is currently director of the CCRC, director of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)–funded Center for Plant and Microbial Complex Carbohydrates, and the University of Georgia’s lead in the DOE-funded BioEnergy Science Center. In 2003, Dr. Darvill was appointed Regents Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and became a senior faculty fellow. He was elected chairman for 1994-1995 of the Carbohydrate Division of the American Chemical Society and was appointed a member in 1993 and chairman in 1996 of the Martin Gibbs Medal Committee of the American Society of Plant Physiologists. He served on the editorial boards of Glycobiology and Plant Journal for Cell and Molecular Biology. Dr. Darvill received the Outstanding Faculty Award of the University of Georgia Chapter of the Golden Key National Honor Society in 1995 and in 2010 was named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Gerald Hart is the DeLamar Professor and Director of Biological Chemistry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He received his Ph.D. in developmental biology from Kansas State University in 1977. His laboratory studies the cross talk between dynamic GlcNAcylation and phosphorylation of nucleocytoplasmic proteins in signaling, transcrip-
tion, and cellular metabolism and the roles of abnormal GlcNAcylation in diabetes, neurodegenerative disease, and cancer (oncogene and tumor suppressor proteins, in particular). The laboratory is also focused on developing improved methods (e.g., mass spectrometry and site-specific antibodies) for the study of O-GlcNAc modification, some of which may have diagnostic value. The lab described a major new form of protein glycosylation (termed “O-GlcNAc”) that is found in all multicellular organisms, including plants, animals, and viruses that infect them. A major research theme is to elucidate the biosynthesis, removal, attachment sites, and functions of this novel posttranslational modification. In 2010, Dr. Hart was named an honorary professor of Shanghai Medical College. From 2009 to 2011 he was president of the International Glycoconjugate Organization. He has received many honors and is a member of many scientific organizations. He was also the founding editor-in-chief of the journal Glycobiology.
Laura L. Kiessling received her B.S. in chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her Ph.D. in chemistry from Yale University. After carrying out postdoctoral training in chemical biology at the California Institute of Technology, she returned in 1991 to Wisconsin, where she was born, to begin her independent career at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently, she is a Hilldale Professor in the Departments of Chemistry and Biochemistry and also the Laurens Anderson Professor of Biochemistry. She serves as director of the Keck Center for Chemical Genomics and as program director for the Chemistry-Biology Interface Predoctoral Training Program. Her interdisciplinary research interests focus on elucidating and exploiting the biological roles of oligosaccharides and oligosaccharide conjugates in biological systems. Some examples of her contributions include a new approach to inhibiting cell wall biosynthesis in Mycobacterium tuberculosis to devising sugar-binding surfaces to grow human embryonic stem cells. Dr. Kiessling serves on several editorial boards and is editor-in-chief of the American Chemical Society’s Chemical Biology. She is a founder of Quintessence Biosciences, Inc., in Madison, Wisconsin. Her honors and awards include Guggenheim and MacArthur Foundation fellowships. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the National Academy of Sciences.
John Lowe joined Genentech, Inc., in 2008 as senior director of pathology. Previously, he was a faculty member at Washington University in St. Louis and the University of Michigan. Most recently, at Case Western Reserve University, Dr. Lowe was chair of a large pathology department whose missions included providing diagnostic laboratory and surgical pathol-
ogy services in support of a 985-bed tertiary care hospital and several other hospitals; educating medical school students, Ph.D. students, postdoctoral fellows, and pathology residents; and managing a comprehensive set of National Institutes of Health–funded basic research programs in immunity and neuroscience. His own research efforts prior to joining Genentech focused primarily on discovering functions for cell surface glycans in mammalian organisms, with particular relevance to the immune system. His role as senior director of pathology at Genentech includes opportunities to continue this research in an outstanding, disease-focused scientific environment while also leading the growth and development of scientific discovery and research support activities of the pathology department at Genentech. These efforts will help Genentech continue to make a major positive difference to the health and well-being of a large number of people who have cancer, autoimmune syndromes, neurodegenerative diseases, and other illnesses for which therapies are unsatisfactory or nonexistent.
Robert J. Moon is a materials research engineer with the Performance-Enhanced Biopolymers Group of the U.S. Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, Wisconsin, and an adjunct associate professor at the School of Materials Engineering and a member of the Brick Nanotechnology Center at Purdue University. He received a B.S. in metallurgy from the University of Wisconsin (1994) and an M.S. (1996) and a Ph.D. (2000) in materials engineering from Purdue University. He completed his postdoctoral research (2000-2005) at the School of Materials Science and Engineering, University of New South Wales, Australia. His specialty is in processing-structure-property relationships of layered, gradient, and hierarchical structured materials and composites. In 2005, Dr. Moon joined the Forest Products Laboratory and in 2007 was selected by the laboratory to lead a collaborative research program with Purdue University that aims to advance nanoscale science and engineering of forestry-based materials. Dr. Moon has applied his expertise to the study of the role of hierarchical structures and interfaces on the mechanisms that dictate properties at the nano-, meso-, and macrolength scales of cellulose nanomaterials and their composites.
James C. Paulson is a professor in the Department of Chemical Physiology and the Department of Molecular Biology at Scripps Research Institute. He is also a principal investigator for the Consortium of Functional Glycomics; a member of the scientific advisory board for the Boston University Mass Spectrometry Resource; a co-chair of the Human Glycomics/ Proteomics Initiative; and a scientific advisor to Nexbio, Institute for Biological Sciences, Neose Technologies, Inc., and the Alberta Ingenu-
ity Center for Carbohydrate Science. He is an honorary member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation; a member of the editorial board of Glycobiology; and a member of the American Chemical Society, the American Society of Biological Chemists, and the Society for Complex Carbohydrates. Before joining Scripps, Dr. Paulson worked at Cytel Corporation (1990-1999) and the University of California at Los Angeles School of Medicine (1978-1990). He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champagne, in 1974. He holds numerous patents and has published over 230 scientific papers. His current research focuses on the roles of glycan-binding proteins that mediate cellular processes central to immune regulation and human diseases. He works at the interface of biology and chemistry to understand how the interaction of glycan-binding proteins with their ligands mediates cell-cell interactions, endocytosis, and cell signaling.
Ram Sasisekharan is Alfred H. Caspary Professor of Biological Engineering in the David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a principal investigator in the Infectious Diseases Interdisciplinary Research Group of the SMART Centre in Singapore. In addition to developing analytical tools to study glycans, Dr. Sasisekharan’s group was the first to conduct detailed studies of a class of glycan-degrading enzymes that were revealed to be critical tools to uncover fundamental biological roles of glycans in diseases including cancer, cardiovascular biology, and infectious diseases. Dr. Sasisekharan has published over 150 manuscripts and filed 70 United States patents and patent applications. He was a founder of Momenta Pharmaceuticals and served as a Director through September 2010. The company was founded in 2001 based on Dr. Sasisekharan’s glycan sequencing platform, and the company has since leveraged this technology to produce the first biosimilar low molecular weight heparin. In 2005 he founded Cerulean Pharmaceuticals, which focuses on combination therapy using nanotechnology. In 2008 he founded Visterra Inc. with a focus on infectious diseases, and he currently serves on the board of this early-stage, venture-backed company. Dr. Sasisekharan is a consultant to and serves on the advisory boards of multiple biotechnology companies, venture funds, and nonprofit institutions involved in the translation of life-sciences innovation. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in physical sciences from Bangalore University and Ph.D. in medical sciences from Harvard Medical School.
Ajit P. Varki received basic training in physiology, medicine, biology, and biochemistry at Christian Medical College (Vellore, India), the University of Nebraska, and Washington University in St. Louis. He also has formal training and certification in internal medicine, hematology, and oncology.
He is now distinguished professor of medicine and cellular and molecular medicine and co-director of the Glycobiology Research and Training Center at the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Varki is also executive editor of the textbook Essentials of Glycobiology. He is a founder and co-director of the UCSD Center for Academic Research and Training in Anthropogeny. He has served as chief editor of the Journal of Clinical Investigation. Dr. Varki is an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Institute of Medicine, American Society for Clinical Investigation, and Association of American Physicians. Dr. Varki has received a MERIT Award from the National Institutes of Health, an American Cancer Society Faculty Research Award, the Karl Meyer Award of the Society for Glycobiology, and the International Glycoconjugate Organization Award. He serves on the National Chimpanzee Observatory Working Group and on the editorial board of Glycobiology. He is a specialist advisor to the Human Gene Nomenclature Committee. His research interests currently focus on the family of sugar molecules called sialic acids and their roles in biology, evolution, and disease. Active projects are relevant to the roles of sialic acids in viral and bacterial infectivity, regulation of the immune response, initiation and progression of tumors, and unique aspects of human evolution. The lab is particularly intrigued to find multiple differences in sialic acid biology between humans and our closest evolutionary cousins, the great apes. These differences are a signature of the multiple cellular and molecular events that occurred during the past few million years of human evolution and are relevant to understanding several aspects of the current human condition, both in health and disease.
Chi-Huey Wong received his Ph.D. in chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University in 1983. Currently, Dr. Wong is president of Academia Sinica (Taipei, Taiwan) and a professor of chemistry at the Scripps Research Institute. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has served on the National Research Council Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology and has held advisory positions in industry and academia. He has received more than 20 awards for his scientific work. His main research interests are in chemical biology and synthetic chemistry, including synthesis of complex carbohydrates, glycoproteins, and small-molecule probes for the study of posttranslational glycosylation and carbohydrate-mediated biological recognition.