General Lab Information

Crysten Blaby

Biologist, Quantitative Plant Science Initiative SFA, Biology Department

Crysten Blaby

Brookhaven National Laboratory

Biology Department
Bldg. 463
P.O. Box 5000
Upton, NY 11973-5000

(631) 344-6038
cblaby@bnl.gov

Preferred Gender Pronouns (PGPs): she, her, hers

As a graduate student in the laboratory of Prof. Valérie de Crécy-Lagard, Dr. Blaby-Haas became fascinated by the elegant logic of comparative genomics as a tool to predict gene/protein function and quickly became immersed in the complexity and diversity of microbial metal homeostasis. As a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Prof. Sabeeha Merchant at the University of California, Los Angeles, Dr. Blaby-Haas received the prestigious NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein NRSA Postdoctoral Fellowship and the 2015 Boyer-Peter Award for her research on the diverse and fascinatingly complex world of metal usage by plants and algae. In 2015, Dr. Blaby-Haas moved to BNL to co-found the Quantitative Plant Science Initiative (QPSI), a team-oriented, multi-disciplinary consortium of researchers focused on using high-performance computing, HTP structural and genetic tools, and functional genomics to resolve the knowledge gap that exists in plant protein function. 

Expertise | Research | Education | Appointments | Publications | Awards


Expertise

Dr. Blaby-Haas has extensive experience in using genomics and post-genomic data to discover and understand biological pathways for the biogenesis of enzymes, metabolites, and biomaterials, specifically related to transition metals and photosynthesis. She have >10 years of experience in genome redesign and engineering in prokaryotes (archaea, gram-negative, gram-positive, cyanobacteria) and eukaryotes (algae, plants, yeast), synthetic (Bio-CAD, DNA assembly and gene editing) and systems biology approaches (transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics), and HTP assay design.

Research Activities

Dr. Blaby-Haas is leading multiple multi-disciplinary collaborative projects that build synergy between DOE National Laboratories, user facilities (JGI, EMSL, NSLS-II), USDA-ARS and several universities to address long-standing challenges in achieving sustainable bioenergy, bioproduction, and biodesign. As the Laboratory Research Manager and lead PI of the Quantitative Plant SFA, she leads a multi-disciplinary team that bridges structural biology, biochemistry, genetics, genomics, metabolic modeling, synthetic biology, and functional genomics to discover fundamental principles underlying successful biosystem design.  

Education

2006 – 2011Ph.D. University of Florida in Microbiology and Cell Science. Dissertation: Linking gene with function: analysis and investigation of novel players in bacterial zinc homeostasis. Advisor: Prof. Valérie de Crécy-Lagard

2002 – 2006B.S. University of Florida in Microbiology and Cell Science with a minor in Chemistry

Professional Appointments

2017 – present, Adjunct Professor, Stony Brook University, Department of Biochemistry & Cell Biology.

Selected Publications

  • Foflonker F, Blaby-Haas CE (2020) Colocality to Cofunctionality: Eukaryotic Gene Neighborhoods as a Resource for Function Discovery. Molecular Biology and Evolution 38:650–662. doi: 10.1093/molbev/msaa221
  • Grosjean N, Blaby-Haas CE (2020) Leveraging computational genomics to understand the molecular basis of metal homeostasis. New Phytologist 228:1472–1489. doi: 10.1111/nph.16820
  • Marckmann D, Trasnea P-I, Schimpf J, Winterstein C, Andrei A, Schmollinger S, Blaby-Haas CE, Friedrich T, Daldal F, Koch H-G (2019) Thecbb3-type cytochrome oxidase assembly factor CcoG is a widely distributed cupric reductase. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116:21166–21175. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1913803116
  • Blaby-Haas CE, Merchant SS (2019) Comparative and Functional Algal Genomics. Annual Review of Plant Biology 70:605–638. doi: 10.1146/annurev-arplant-050718-095841
  • Zhang Y, Blaby-Haas CE, Steimle S, Verissimo AF, Garcia-Angulo VA, Koch H-G, Daldal F, Khalfaoui-Hassani B (2019) Cu Transport by the Extended Family of CcoA-like Transporters (CalT) in Proteobacteria. Scientific Reports. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-37988-4
  • Brawley SH, Blouin NA, Ficko-Blean E, Wheeler GL, Lohr M, Goodson HV, Jenkins JW, Blaby-Haas CE, Helliwell KE, Chan CX, Marriage TN, Bhattacharya D, Klein AS, Badis Y, Brodie J, Cao Y, Collén J, Dittami SM, Gachon CMM, Green BR, Karpowicz SJ, Kim JW, Kudahl UJ, Lin S, Michel G, Mittag M, Olson BJSC, Pangilinan JL, Peng Y, Qiu H, Shu S, Singer JT, Smith AG, Sprecher BN, Wagner V, Wang W, Wang Z-Y, Yan J, Yarish C, Zäuner-Riek S, Zhuang Y, Zou Y, Lindquist EA, Grimwood J, Barry KW, Rokhsar DS, Schmutz J, Stiller JW, Grossman AR, Prochnik SE (2017) Insights into the red algae and eukaryotic evolution from the genome ofPorphyra umbilicalis(Bangiophyceae, Rhodophyta). Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 114:E6361–E6370. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1703088114
  • Blaby-Haas CE, Padilla-Benavides T, Stübe R, Argüello JM, Merchant SS (2014) Evolution of a plant-specific copper chaperone family for chloroplast copper homeostasis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111:E5480–E5487. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1421545111
  • Blaby-Haas CE, Merchant SS (2012) The ins and outs of algal metal transport. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - Molecular Cell Research 1823:1531–1552. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamcr.2012.04.010
  • Blaby-Haas CE, Furman R, Rodionov DA, Artsimovitch I, de Crécy-Lagard V (2010) Role of a Zn-independent DksA in Zn homeostasis and stringent response. Molecular Microbiology 79:700–715. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2958.2010.07475.x
  • Haas CE, Rodionov DA, Kropat J, Malasarn D, Merchant SS, de Crécy-Lagard V (2009) A subset of the diverse COG0523 family of putative metal chaperones is linked to zinc homeostasis in all kingdoms of life. BMC Genomics 10:470. doi: 10.1186/1471-2164-10-470

Awards & Recognition

  • 34th Annual Women’s Recognition Award for Science, 2020
  • NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA), Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship (F32), “Dissection of the Molecular Details of Fe-deficiency Acclimation in the Green Alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii”, University of California, Los Angeles, 2012 – 2015
  • Peter-Boyer Postdoctoral Award for Research Excellence, 2015
Crysten Blaby

Brookhaven National Laboratory

Biology Department
Bldg. 463
P.O. Box 5000
Upton, NY 11973-5000

(631) 344-6038
cblaby@bnl.gov

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