European Bioinformatics Institute, United Kingdom

The European Bioinformatics Institute, Cambridge (UK)The European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) is an academic research institute located on the Wellcome Trust Genome Campus in Hinxton near Cambridge (UK), part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL). Its mission is to provide freely available data and bioinformatics services to all facets of the scientific community in ways that promote scientific progress; to contribute to the advancement of biology through basic investigator-driven research in bioinformatics; to provide advanced bioinformatics training to scientists at all levels, from PhD students to independent investigators and to help disseminate cutting-edge technologies to industry. It has had a leading role in the establishment of ELIXIR and is the coordinator of the BioMedBridges project.

The Cheminformatics and Metabolism team provides information about metabolism: small molecules and their effects in biological systems. They develop and maintain MetaboLights, a metabolomics reference database and archive; ChEBI, EMBL-EBI’s database and ontology of chemical entities of biological interest; and the EnzymePortal (including Rhea and IntEnz), a user-led resource for enzyme-related data. They also develop methods to decipher, organise and publish the small molecule metabolic content of organisms, and are involved in community-wide efforts to develop and promote standards in these domains.

Main tasks:

WP2 Leader, Ontology Development

Previous experience:

Dr Steinbeck is the PI on:

1) MetaboLights grant (BB/I000933/1) by the BBSRC to create the first open access, general-purpose database and repository for metabolomics,
2) the COSMOS EU project for the coordination of standards in metabolomics (grant agreement EC312941), Furthermore Dr Steinbeck is work package leader in EU projects
3) FELICS (grant agreement 021902) and
4) SLING (grant agreement 226073).

Short profile of staff members:

Dr Christoph Steinbeck is head of cheminformatics and metabolism at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EBI) in Hinxton, Cambridge, UK. His group develops the EBI’s database of Chemical Entities of Biological Interest (ChEBI), the EBI’s EnzymePortal and the metabolomics database MetaboLights. Furthermore, Christoph Steinbeck is a director of the Metabolomics Society, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Cheminformatics, past chairman of the Computers-Information-Chemistry (CIC) division of the German Chemical Society, and member of various editorial boards and committees. Dr Christoph Steinbeck has 15+ years of experience in leading service teams of up to 20 team members in bioinformatics, project management and participation in research consortia. Dr Steinbeck will be supported by team member Janna Hastings.

Janna Hastings acquired an MSc in Computer Science from the University of South Africa in the area of structured object representation and reasoning. Janna has worked in IT for more than a decade and joined EMBL-EBI in 2006. She has broad expertise in ontology development and technology especially in the context of the ChEBI chemical ontology. She is now group coordinator for the Cheminformatics and Metabolism group.

Hastings J, de Matos P, Dekker A, Ennis M, Harsha B, Kale N, Muthukrishnan V, Owen G, Turner S, Williams M, Steinbeck C. The ChEBI reference database and ontology for biologically relevant chemistry: enhancements for 2013. Nucleic Acids Res. 2013 Jan;41(Database issue):D456-63.
Hastings J, Magka D, Batchelor C, Duan L, Stevens R, Ennis M & Steinbeck C (2012) Structure-based classification and ontology in chemistry. J Cheminform 4, 8.
Hastings J, Chepelev L, Willighagen E, Adams N, Steinbeck C, Dumontier M. The chemical information ontology: provenance and disambiguation for chemical data on the biological semantic web. PLoS One. 2011;6(10):e25513.
Chepelev LL, Hastings J, Ennis M, Steinbeck C & Dumontier M (2012) Self-organizing ontology of biochemically relevant small molecules. BMC Bioinformatics 13, 3.