Metabolomics allows the comprehensive profiling of hundreds to thousands of small molecules present within a system. By using this approach, we can understand how metabolic changes (in plants, cells, animals, or people) are affected by our research question, and generate new ideas we may not be able to a priori hypothesize.
In order to understand what phytochemicals are doing within a system, robust and quantitative methods are required for their analysis. We focus on developing liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry based methods to allow analysis of phytochemicals and their metabolites, often present at picomolar concentrations.
To determine the in vivo health impacts of fruits and vegetables and their constituent phytochemicals, we conduct studies in animals and humans. We look to understand absorption, metabolism, distribution, excretion, and effect on development of disease.