Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

William Funk Lab

Adductomics

Scheme for applying adductomics to generating adduct maps for biomarker discovery.

The concept of a human exposome—which includes the totality of all chemical exposures from conception onward—has recently emerged as complement to the human genome for investigating risk factors associated with adverse health outcomes. To discover unidentified risk factor, our lab focuses on reactive electrophiles, which are a large and important class of chemicals arising from both xenobiotic insult (i.e., environmental toxicants) and endogenous production (i.e., oxidative stress). However, because electrophiles normally have very short life spans in vivo, they typically cannot be measured directly in blood samples. This challenge has motivated our group and others to focus on protein adducts (addition products) as biomarkers for estimating exposures to reactive electrophilic chemicals. In our lab we have helped to pioneer the emerging field of adductomics, which is an unbiased biomarker discovery approach for investigating environmental risk factors for adverse health outcomes. Current projects in our lab are focused on mapping the adductome from before birth throughout childhood development (1 R21 ES026776-01). In addition, we are currently collaborating with the University of Southern California to apply adductomics to investigate associations between early-life exposures to air pollution and children’s health as part of the LA DREAMERs Environmental Influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) Pediatric Cohort Study (UG3/UH3 RFA-OD-16-003).

Scheme for applying adductomics to generating adduct maps for biomarker discovery.