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Professor Conrad Bessant
Professor of Bioinformatics

Location: Room 4.13, Fogg Building
Phone: +44 (0)20 7882 6510

The aim of my research is to maximise the quantity and quality of new biological knowledge that can be derived from the large multivariate data sets generated by today’s high throughput bioanalytical protocols. In practical terms this involves using advanced computational and statistical methods to develop algorithms and software for the analysis of data from techniques such as high throughput sequencing and biomolecular mass spectrometry. 

Current research projects are described in brief below:

  1. Targeted Proteomics: We have developed, and continue to refine and maintain, a web-based software tool called MRMaid that mines millions of publicly available peptide spectra to help researchers design targeted proteomics assays for selected reaction monitoring (SRM) experiments. To find out more read the paper
  2. Proteomics Informed by Transcriptomics: In collaboration with David Matthews of the University of Bristol we have pioneered the use of de novo transcript assemblies from RNA-seq data for the routine creation of sample-specific proteomes. This brings the power of proteomics to previously intractable applications, such as host-pathogen studies and metaproteomics experiments. To find out more read the paper.
  3. Quantitative Proteomics: We are developing X-Tracker, which aims to support a wide range of quantitative workflows through a novel plugin-based PSI-standards-compliant architecture. This command line tool is being integrated into the ProteoSuite project, which provides a convenient graphical user interface. Papers coming soon.
  4. Pattern Recognition: We have a long standing reputation for multivariate data analysis, most recently the application of support vector machines (SVMs) and associated validation methods to recognise diagnostic patterns in biomedicine, food analysis and basic science. To find out more read the papers: metalloproteins, lymphoma, meat freshness, tuberculosis, bladder cancer.

Research department

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