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Tom Tullius

Disciplines: Biochemistry
Employment: Director at Boston University, Professor at Boston University
Education: Stanford University
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Biography

Tom Tullius is Professor of Chemistry and Director of the Graduate Program in Bioinformatics at Boston University. He received his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1979 in bioinorganic chemistry, working with Keith O. Hodgson on X-ray spectroscopy of metalloproteins. He was an NIH postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University from 1979-82 in the laboratory of Stephen J. Lippard, studying the interaction of platinum antitumor drugs with DNA. He began his independent academic career in 1982 at The Johns Hopkins University, where he was Professor of Chemistry, Biophysics, and Biology and the McCollum-Pratt Institute. He moved to Boston University in 1997 to become Chair of the Department of Chemistry (1997-2005). Currently he is Director of the Program in Bioinformatics, and Professor of Chemistry, at Boston University. His awards include an Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar Award in Aging, the Herbert A. Sober Award of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and a Searle Scholar award. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Tom Tullius is widely known for introducing an elegant and powerful chemistry-based method, hydroxyl radical footprinting, for determining structural details of nucleic acids. Systems he has studied include the nucleosome, the Holliday junction recombination intermediate, bent DNA, and DNA-protein complexes. His publications have been very highly cited – five of his key papers have been cited in more than 2000 scientific papers. Hydroxyl radical footprinting has been adopted by many scientists in related fields, to determine the structures of large RNAs and to follow the kinetics of folding of RNA. In recent years his laboratory has focused on studies at the whole-genome level. As part of the ENCODE Consortium, Tullius used the hydroxyl radical method to make a high-resolution structural map of the human genome. His most exciting recent finding is that there is evolutionary selection for DNA shape that is not evident in the conservation of nucleotide sequence. The new genomic "grammar" that his lab is beginning to describe has the promise to revolutionize our understanding of the role of DNA shape and structure in biology.

Employment

Boston University (2009 to present)

Director in Program in Bioinformatics

Boston, MA

Boston University (1997-07 to present)

Professor in Chemistry

Boston, MA

Johns Hopkins University (1982-07 to 1997-07)

Professor in Chemistry, Biology, Biophysics

Baltimore, MD

Columbia University (1979-05 to 1982-07)

National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow in Chemistry

New York, NY

Education

Stanford University, Chemistry (1973 to 1979)

Ph.D.

Stanford, CA

UCLA, Chemistry (1969 to 1973)

B.S.

Los Angeles, Califormia

Funding

National Science Foundation - Directorate for Biological Sciences

Chemical probing of RNA tertiary structure in a whole transcriptome at single-atom resolution

2016-07-15 to 2019-06-30

Grant Number:  1616388

National Institutes of Health

Genome analysis based on the integration of DNA sequence and shape

2014-02 to 2018-01

Grant Number:  R01 GM 106056

National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Predoctoral Training in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

2012-07-01 to 2017-06-30

Grant Number:  5T32GM100842-03

Ellison Medical Foundation

Genome Damage and Aging: Whole-Genome Maps of Oxidative DNA Lesions at Single-Nucleotide Resolution

2009-11 to 2014-10

Grant Number:  AG-SS-2249-09

National Science Foundation

Measurement of the Deuterium Kinetic Isotope Effect on Hydroxyl Radical Cleavage of RNA

2009-07-01 to 2013-09-30

Grant Number:  0843265

National Science Foundation - Directorate for Biological Sciences

Measurement of the Deuterium Kinetic Isotope Effect on Hydroxyl Radical Cleavage of RNA

2009-07-01 to 2013-09-30

Grant Number:  0843265

National Human Genome Research Institute

Structure of genomic DNA at single-nucleotide resolution

2004-09-29 to 2012-06-30

Grant Number:  5R01HG003541-05

National Science Foundation

IGERT FORMAL PROPOSAL: Graduate Research Training in Bioinformatics

1998-09-01 to 2005-08-31

Grant Number:  9870710

National Science Foundation - Directorate for Education and Human Resources

IGERT FORMAL PROPOSAL: Graduate Research Training in Bioinformatics

1998-09-01 to 2005-08-31

Grant Number:  9870710

National Institute of General Medical Sciences

FOOTPRINTING WITH IRON (II)-GENERATED HYDROXYL RADICAL

1989-04-01 to 2005-06-30

Grant Number:  5R01GM041930-14

National Science Foundation

Center for Biophysical Studies on Macromolecular Assemblies

1988-08-01 to 1995-01-31

Grant Number:  8721059

National Science Foundation - Directorate for Biological Sciences

Center for Biophysical Studies on Macromolecular Assemblies

1988-08-01 to 1995-01-31

Grant Number:  8721059

National Institute of General Medical Sciences

USING THE CHEMISTRY OF IRON(II) TO STUDY DNA STRUCTURE

1988-07-01 to 2003-12-31

Grant Number:  5R01GM040894-16

National Cancer Institute

USING METALS TO STUDY DNA AND DNA-PROTEIN COMPLEXES

1987-04-01 to 1992-03-31

Grant Number:  5K04CA001208-05

National Cancer Institute

METAL COMPLEXES AND ENZYMES AS PROBES OF DNA STRUCTURE

1985-07-01 to 1988-06-30

Grant Number:  5R01CA037444-03