Redox Metabolism Shared Resource Facility (RM SRF)
Director: D. Allan Butterfield, PhD
The mission of the Redox Metabolism Shared Resource Facility (RM SRF) is to provide expertise and services in redox metabolism, oxidative stress, mitochondrial function, and proteomics to basic and clinical investigators of the Markey Cancer Center (MCC) doing basic, pre-clinical, and clinical research.
To accommodate the rapidly growing filed of cancer metabolism, the RM SRF has recently added metabolomics services. These services are available via the Center for Environmental and Systems Biochemistry (CESB), which houses the Resource Center for Stable
Isotope Resolved Metabolomics (RC-SIRM).
The RM SRF’s metabolomics capacity complements existing Markey science and existing Seahorse technology, oxidative stress measures and proteomics identification of key proteins.
How the RM SRF furthers Markey science
The role of free radicals and altered metabolism is increasingly apparent in various aspects of cancer biology and cancer therapy. Recognizing the importance of free radicals from programmatic meetings and retreats, MCC members advocated for the formation of
the RM SRF. This demonstrates that the RM SRF emanated from member wishes that the MCC provide excellence in this important aspect of cancer biology.
Analysis of the roles of free radicals in cancer biology requires highly skilled ability to:
- Measure the damage induced by free radicals in various tissues, cells, and fluids associated with different cancers.
- Measure oxygen and nitrogen free radical species via biochemical and biophysical methods.
- Measure molecules responsible for free radical production, oxidant scavenging, and free radical damage.
- Use proteomics and metabolomics to identify proteins in tissues, cells, and fluids that have differential levels or have been oxidatively modified and to determine associated functional changes.
- Measure mitochondrial function, since mitochondria are a major source of free radicals in cells.
A fundamental cornerstone for the RM SRFs metabolomics component is stable-isotope labeling during the biological experiment, meaning experimental design must be integrated with analysis and informatics. Because of this, a simple fee-for-service model is unlikely to yield very useful
results for cancer researchers, and metabolomics services are structured for extensive advising and collaboration.
Importantly, and unique to this region of the United States, the RM SRF
is one of only a few cancer center-resident resources in the world with the
knowledge and reagents necessary to provide the redox and metabolism services
needed by MCC members. Personnel in the RM SRF are highly knowledgeable about
free radicals, oxidative stress, metabolism, sample handling and preparation,
and the advantages and limitations of each assay employed, including
bioenergetics, metabolomics, and proteomics. The RC-SIRM, housed in
the CESB, is one of the six metabolomics centers supported by the NIH Common
Fund. These unique investments provide
a distinct advantage to MCC researchers in sample use, analysis, and
interpretation of results.
If multiple PIs request simultaneous analyses, the RM SRF leadership determines priority based on the following criteria:
- Level 1: Samples from MCC members with NCI funding or cancer-related federally funded peer reviewed studies
- Level 2: Samples from MCC investigators preparing cancer-related, peer reviewed grant applications
- Level 3: Samples from MCC investigators with a cancer-related project funded by MCC pilot studies or non-peer reviewed source
- Level 4: Samples from MCC investigators without funding whose analysis would lead to preliminary data and the likelihood of a subsequent extramural proposal submission
- Level 5: Samples from non-MCC investigators.
Investigators are required to acknowledge the Markey Cancer
Center Redox Metabolism Shared Resource Facility (MCC RM SRF)
in any publications that result from the use of Redox Metabolism services
or information received through the MCC RM SRF. For your convenience, you are
welcome to use the following statement:
The research was supported by the Redox Metabolism Shared
Resource Facility of the University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center
Hours of operation
The RM SRF
can be contacted online at anytime, 24-hours a day, via iLab at