Thomas V. O'Halloran, PhD

Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Molecular Biosciences, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences; Director of Chemistry of Life Processes Institute; Director of Quantitative Bio-element Imaging Center; Senior Advisor to the Director of Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University

Thomas V. O'Halloran, PhD, directs interdisciplinary research programming at the interfaces of cell and molecular and cell biology, nanotechnology and bioinorganic chemistry. In his role of the Director of the Chemistry of Life Processes Institute, Dr. O'Halloran brings together teams of researchers from the fields of chemistry, biology, physics, engineering, medicine, proteomics, nanobiotechnology, molecular therapeutics, and biological molecular imaging with the mission of developing new insights and engineering solutions to pressing biomedical problems. 

Dr. O'Halloran's research interests center on the assembly and characterization of novel agents that alter the regulatory biology of transition metal receptors involved in signaling and trafficking pathways. This work provided early insights into molecular regulatory mechanisms and has led to the discovery of new classes of soluble metal receptors: metalloregulatory and metallochaperone proteins. He has also discovered nanoscale processes for targeted delivery of multifunctional therapeutic agents based on the arsenic and platinum classes of anticancer agents for treatment of hematological cancer and solid tumors. Most recently, he and his collaborators have discovered that zinc fluxes control fundamental developmental decisions in bacteria, disease-causing parasites and fertilization of mammalian eggs. He has founded several biotech start-up companies.

He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Royal Society of Chemistry, and the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science as well as a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow. Professor O'Halloran received a MERIT award from the National Institutes of Health. In 2016 Dr. O’Halloran gave the annual DeWitt Stetten Jr. Lecture at the NIH. Recipients of this award are leaders in biomedical research that have had long-time support from NIGMS and have included several Nobel Prize winners.

Dr. O’Halloran received his BS and MA degrees in Chemistry from the University of Missouri, and a PhD in 1985 from Columbia University. He joined the faculty of Northwestern University in 1986 after a National Research Service Award (NRSA) Postdoctoral Fellowship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Watch video about Dr. O'Halloran's research program as featured on NIGMS Biomedical Beat website.

Contact Information:

Office: Silverman Hall 4611
Phone: 847-491-5060
Fax: 847-467-1566
Email: t-ohalloran [at] northwestern [dot] edu

Contact Information:

Sandra Siepka, PhD

Office: Silverman Hall 4609
Phone: 847-467-0965
Fax: 847-467-1566
Email: sandra [dot] siepka [at] northwestern [dot] edu