Platform Leader, Mass Spectrometry

Elias received his Ph.D. from Harvard Medical School in cell biology with Stephen Gygi. During his thesis research, Elias developed the now ubiquitous “target-decoy” search strategy for controlling proteomic experimental error. This effort established his long-standing interest in improving proteomics workflows, bringing them in sync with the robust methods used in genomics and allied fields. As a faculty member at Stanford University, Elias focused on solving three extraordinary challenges in proteomics: identifying disease-relevant antigens presented on MHC complexes; characterizing the biologically relevant proteins that mediate host-microbiome interaction;, and improving methods for searching the vast sequence space these experiments encompass. At CZ Biohub, Elias and his team are continuing to define the range of antigens that underlie health and disease and how these antigens relate to our microbiomes. The technologies they are developing are broadly applicable, including methods to quantify the dynamic regulation of protein post-translational modifications and to identify novel post-translational modifications that have so far been hidden in the “dark matter” of biology – molecules invisible to genomic technologies and standard proteomic assays.

Photo of JOSH ELIAS, PH.D.