Northwestern's amazingly inventive professor Meade

Thomas Meade: 'Aim high and be passionate about discovery.'

Thomas J. Meade, PhD

Eileen M. Foell Professor of Cancer Research and Professor of Chemistry, Molecular Biosciences, and Neurobiology, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences
Professor of Biomedical Engineering, McCormick School of Engineering
Professor of Radiology, Feinberg School of Medicine

Member, Chemistry of Life Processes Institute
Faculty Director, Center for Advanced Molecular Imaging

Professor Meade is the Eileen M. Foell Professor of Cancer Research and Professor of Chemistry, Molecular Biosciences, Neurobiology, Biomedical Engineering and Radiology. He received his masters in Biochemistry and PhD in inorganic chemistry and after completing a NIH fellowship in Radiology at Harvard Medical School he was a postdoctoral fellow at the California Institute of Technology. In 1991 he joined the Division of Biology and the Beckman Institute at Caltech

In 2002 he moved to Northwestern University, where he is the Director of the Center for Advanced Molecular Imaging (CAMI). Professor Meade’s research focuses on coordination chemistry and its application in bioinorganic problems that include biological molecular imaging, electron transfer processes and the development of electronic biosensors for the detection of DNA and proteins.

He has received numerous awards and in 2009 was a Miller Professor at the University of California Berkeley. He holds more than 100 US patents and has founded four biotech companies, Clinical Micro Sensors, Meataprobe, PreDx and Ohmx which are developing hand-held detection devices for protein and DNA detection and bioactivated MR contrast agents for clinical imaging.


Adams C., Meade TJ., “Gd(III)-Pt(IV) Theranostic contrast agents for tandem MR imaging and chemotherapy.” Chemical Science, (2020), in press. 

Adams C., Krueger R., Meade TJ.,“A Multimodal Ca(II) Responsive Near IR-MR Contrast Agent Exhibiting High Cellular Uptake.” ACS Chemical Biology, (2020), in press.

Lilley LM, Kamper S, Caldwell M, Chia ZK, Mallweg D, Vistain L, Krimmel J, Mills TA, MacRenaris K, Lee P, Waters EA, Meade TJ. “Self Immolative Activation of β-Galactosidase-Responsive Probes for In Vivo MR Imaging in Mouse Models.” Angew Chem Int.Ed Engl., (2020), 59, 388-394. PMCID: PMC6923588.

Li H, Meade TJ. “Molecular Magnetic Resonance Imaging with Gd(III)-Based Contrast Agents: Challenges and Key Advances.” J. Am. Chem. Soc., (2019), 141, 43, 17025-17041. PMCID: PMC6821590.

Moore LK, Caldwell MA, Townsend TR, MacRenaris KW, Moyle-Heyrman G, Rammohan N, Schonher EK, Burdette JE, Ho D, Meade TJ. Water-Soluble Nanoconjugate for Enhanced Cellular Delivery of Receptor-Targeted Magnetic Resonance Contrast Agents.” Biocon. Chem., (2019), 30, 2947-2957. PMCID: PMC6868311.

Iscen A, Brue CR, Roberts KF, Kim J, Schatz GC, Meade TJ. ”Inhibition of Amyloid-β Aggregation by Cobalt(III) Schiff Base Complexes: A Computational and Experimental Approach.” J. Am. Chem. Soc., (2019), 141, 16685-16695.

Bajema EA, Roberts KF, Meade TJ, “Cobalt-Schiff Base Complexes: Preclinical Research and Potential Therapeutic Uses.”  Metal Ions in Life Sciences,  (A. Sigel, E. Freisinger and R. Sigel, eds.) Vol. 19., Chapter 11, (2019), 4267-4301.

Li H, Parigi G, Luchinat C, Meade TJ. “A Bimodal Fluorescence-Magnetic Resonance Contrast Agent for Apoptosis Imaging.” J. Am. Chem. Soc., (2019), 141 (15), 6224-6233 DOI: PMCID: PMC6939894.

Hanson, ED., Lilley LM., Cain JD., Shiqiang H., Palacios E., Aydin K., Wolverton C., Meade TJ., Dravid, VP., “Phase engineering and optical properties of 2D MoSe2: Promise and pitfalls.” Materials Chemistry and Physics, (2019), 225, 219-226. 

Rotz MW, Holbrook RJ, MacRenaris KW, Meade TJ. “A Markedly Improved Synthetic Approach for the Preparation of Multifunctional Au-DNA Nanoparticle Conjugates Modified with Optical and MR Imaging Probes.” Bioconjugate Chemistry, (2018), 29, 11, 3544-3549. PMCID: PMC6268127.

 LM Lilley, K Du, MD Krzyaniak, G Parigi, C Luchinat, TD Harris and TJ Meade“Effect of Magnetic Coupling on Water Proton Relaxivity in a Series of Transition Metal-Gd(III) Complexes”  Inorg Chem (2018), 57(10), 5810-5819. PMCID: PMC6016852

Sleep E, Cosgrove BD, McClendon MT, Preslar, AT, Chen CH, Sangjie MH, Perez CMR, Haynes  RD, Meade TJ, Blau HM, Stupp SI.“Injectable Biomimetic Liquid Crystalline Scaffolds Enhance Muscle Stem Cell Transplantation.” PNAS (2017), 114(38), E7919-E7928. PMCID: PMC5617293

Select Honors and Awards

Fellow, National Academy of Inventors (2017)

Stony Brook University Franklin Award Lecture (2017)     

Mahler Lecturer, University of Texas, Austin (2016)

Fellow, Royal Society of Chemistry (2016)

Associate Editor, Chemical Science (2016)

Elected Fellow, National Academy of Inventors (2016)

Elected Fellow, Royal Society of Chemistry (2016)

The J. Stieglitz Award: University of Chicago and the American Chemical Society (2016)

Elected Fellow, American Association of Advancement of Science (2015)

Hill Lecturer, Duke University (2014)

Catalyst Award, Northwestern University and the City of Evanston (2014)

Fellow of the World Molecular Imaging Society (2012)

Fellow of the American Chemical Society (2011)

Society for Molecular Imaging Annual Exceptional Achievement Award

Musselman Award for Visiting Scientist (2010)

Illinois Biotechnology Industry Organization (iBIO) iCON Innovator Award (2009)

Miller Professor, University of California Berkeley (2009)

Northwestern University Excellence in Teaching Award (2008)

William Beaumont Award: Wayne County Medical Society (2007)

Allen & Constance Ford Distinguished Award, CaseWestern ReserveUniversity (2006)

Eileen Foell Chair in Cancer Research, Northwestern University, (2005)

Elected President – Society of Molecular Imaging – Membership>1,000 Chair (2005)

Committee- Imaging in 2020 IV, (2005)

FMC Award – Princeton University, (2004)

Elkin Distinguished Investigators Cancer Lecturer, Emory University (2003)

Neuroscience Award Lecture, Society for Neuro-Oncology (November 2002)

National Academy of Engineering Lecturer, Cleveland, Ohio, (2000)

Pendergast Lecturer, University of Pennsylvania (1999)

American College of Neuropharmacology Lecturer (1999)

Caltech Grubstakes Award (1996, 1998)