Professor of Chemistry
Ph.D. Charles University, 1977
The Turecek group is currently involved in several lines of research using mass spectrometry as the core technique. A major area of research, supported by the National Science Foundation, concerns new methods of peptide and protein sequencing using special mass spectrometric techniques based on ion-electron recombination. Experimental studies are being carried out locally at the UW Proteomics Resource or in collaboration with other research in the U.S. and abroad (France, Denmark, Japan). For smaller model systems we employ a unique tandem mass spectrometer (declared tongue-in-cheek "Seattle's best mass spectrometer" by a local weekly and immortalized in an abstract painting sold to an art collector in Manchester, UK), which is used to generate transient neutral intermediates of chemical reactions relevant to the chemistries of the atmosphere, flames, and radiation damage. This research involves ion chemistry, kinetic measurements on the microsecond time scale, laser photoexcitation, isotope labeling, and theory. An important component of this research relies on high-level quantum chemical calculations including tunnel effects and unimolecular kinetics. To this end, the interested graduate students use the new cluster of several hundred 8-core, 64-bit processors with many GBytes of fast memory.
A collaboration with the labs of UW faculty members Michael Gelb (Chemistry and Biochemistry) and C. Ronald Scott (Pediatrics and Seattle Children’s Hospital) and supported by the National Institutes of Health has resulted in the development of multiplex strategies for assaying enzymes and proteomics. Enzymes responsible for genetic diseases in children are studied in dried blood spots and their action quantified by electrospray-ionization mass spectrometry to provide medical diagnosis. This line of research involves a good deal of organic chemistry in combination with instrumental analysis.
Another collaborative project, also supported by the NIH, is aimed at developing a new instrumentation, mating nanofluidic generation and manipulation of aqueous droplets with mass spectrometric analysis of the droplet contents. This research is aiming to ultimately achieve a complete chemical analysis of single cells of relevance to the development of cancer and other diseases.
Graduate students in the Turecek group are exposed to a variety of ideas, techniques, and projects, which all contribute to a quality education. Ph.D. graduates enjoy excellent job opportunities in the booming mass spectrometry community in research, academia, drug development, and instrument manufacture.
Spáčil, Z.; Elliott, S.; Reeber, S. L.; Gelb, M. H.; Scott, C. R.; Tureček, F. "Comparative
Fast Liquid Chromatography: Application to Newborn Screening of Pompe, Fabry, and Hurler Diseases." Anal. Chem. 2011, 84, 4822-4828.
Moss, C. L.; Chung, T. W.; Wyer, J. A.; Nielsen, S. B.; Hvelplund, P. Tureček, F. "Dipole-Guided Electron Capture Causes Abnormal Dissociations of Phosphorylated Pentapeptides." J. Am. Soc. Mass Spectrom. 2011, 22, 731-751.
Wolfe, B.; Blanchard, S.; Sadílek, M.; Scott, C. R. Tureček, F.; Gelb, M. H. "Tandem Mass Spectrometry for the Direct Assay of Lysosomal Enzymes in Dried Blood Spots: Application to Screening Newborns for Mucopolysaccharidosis II (Hunter Syndrome)." Anal. Chem. 2011, 83, 1152-1156.
Zimnicka, M.; Gregersen, J. A.; Tureček, F. "A Stable Aminothioketyl Radical in the Gas Phase." J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 10290-10301.
Tureček, F.; Chung, T. W.; Moss, C. L.; Wyer, J. A.; Ehlerding, A.; Holm, A. I. S.; Zettergren,
H.; Nielsen, S. B.; Hvelplund, P.; Chamot-Rooke, J.; Bythell, B.; Paizs, B. "The Histidine Effect. Electron Transfer and Capture Cause Different Dissociations and Rearrangements of Histidine
Peptide Cation-Radicals." J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 10728-10740.
Duffey, T. A.; Bellamy, G.; Diaker, J.; Elliott, S.; Glass, M.; Scott, C. R.; Tureček, F.; Gelb, M. H. "Triplex Tandem Mass Spectrometry for Newborn Screening of Fabry, Pompe and Mucopolysaccharidosis I (Hurler Syndrome): Results of a Pilot Study". Clin. Chem. 2010, 56, 1854-1861.
Tureček, F.; Panja, S.; Wyer, J. A.; Ehlerding, A.; Zettergen, H.; Nielsen, S. B.; Hvelplund, P.; Bythell, B.; Paizs, B. "Carboxyl-Catalyzed Prototropic Rearrangements in Histidine Peptide Radicals upon Electron Transfer. Effects of Peptide Sequence and Conformation." J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2009, 131, 16472-16487.
2010 Patria Science Award
J. J. Marci of Kronstad Medal of the Czech Spectroscopic Society (2010)
P. B. Hopkins Faculty Award (2008)
Secretary, American Society for Mass Spectrometry (2005-07)
Affiliate Staff Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (1996-98)
500 Leaders of Science, American Biographic Institute
Editorial Board, Collection of Czechoslovak Chemical Communications, Spectroscopy Letters, International Journal of Mass Spectrometry
Editor, Journal of Mass Spectrometry (1994-present)
Honorary Plaque of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences