Aalim M. Weljie, Ph.D.

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Associate Professor of Pharmacology
Department: Pharmacology

Contact information
10-113 Smilow Center for Translational Research
3400 Civic Center Blvd, Bldg 421
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-573-8085
Lab: 215-898-2220
B.Sc. (Chemistry; Certificate in Engineering)
Mount Allison University, 1996.
Ph.D. (Biochemistry)
University of Calgary, 2002.
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Description of Research Expertise

The Weljie Lab is at the forefront of understanding systems level changes in metabolism in a translational medicine context, particularly related to sleep and circadian rhythms. We are in the Department of Systems Pharmacology and Translational Therapeutics within the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Our primary approaches use metabolomics technologies such as mass spectrometry (MS) and nuclear magentic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) for steady state metabolite measurements, stable isotope tracing of substrate metabolites, and MS imaging approaches using desorption electrospray ionization (DESI)-MS.

Metabolomics is a growing sub-field of systems biology centered on the study of small biological molecules in biological fluids and tissues. Recent research demonstrates that analysis of metabolite concentrations in living systems is useful in disease diagnosis, prognosis, and predicting drug efficacy in a personalized medicine context.

There is an intrinsic link between metabolism and function of the innate circadian clock system in numerous organisms and disease states, but the exact mechanism by which the clock controls mammalian metabolism is poorly understood. Our work seeks to fill this knowledge gap along with a particular emphasis on understanding the relationship of the clock with sleep, cancer and environmental health.

Selected Publications

Ai Wen Tan, Georgios Paschos, Aalim M. Weljie: High-throughput Lipidomics Using DESI-MS Imaging. Mass Spectrometry Applications in the Clinical Laboratory meeting 2020, Palm Springs Florida April 2020 Notes: Cancelled due to COVID-19.

Tan Ai Wen, Weljie Aalim M: Metabolite Imaging at the Margin: Visualizing Metabolic Tumor Gradients Using Mass Spectrometry. Cancer research 80(6): 1231-1233, Mar 2020.

Lee Pearl, Malik Dania, Perkons Nicholas, Huangyang Peiwei, Khare Sanika, Rhoades Seth, Gong Yao-Yu, Burrows Michelle, Finan Jennifer M, Nissim Itzhak, Gade Terence P F, Weljie Aalim M, Simon M Celeste: Targeting glutamine metabolism slows soft tissue sarcoma growth. Nature communications 11(1): 498, January 2020.

Sengupta Arjun, Weljie Aalim M: NMR Spectroscopy-Based Metabolic Profiling of Biospecimens. Current protocols in protein science 98(1): e98, Dec 2019.

Sengupta Arjun, Weljie Aalim M: Metabolism of sleep and aging: Bridging the gap using metabolomics. Nutrition and healthy aging 5(3): 167-184, Dec 2019.

Huangyang Peiwei, Li Fuming, Lee Pearl, Nissim Itzhak, Weljie Aalim M, Mancuso Anthony, Li Bo, Keith Brian, Yoon Sam S, Celeste Simon M: Fructose-1,6-Bisphosphatase 2 Inhibits Sarcoma Progression by Restraining Mitochondrial Biogenesis. Cell metabolism Nov 2019.

Hsieh Annie L, Zheng Xiangzhong, Yue Zhifeng, Stine Zachary E, Mancuso Anthony, Rhoades Seth D, Brooks Rebekah, Weljie Aalim M, Eisenman Robert N, Sehgal Amita, Dang Chi V: Misregulation of Drosophila Myc Disrupts Circadian Behavior and Metabolism. Cell reports 29(7): 1778-1788.e4, Nov 2019.

Arjun Sengupta, Jennifer Choi Tudor, Daniel Cusmano1, Joe Baur1, Ted Abel, Aalim Weljie : Interleaving Metabolic Effects of Sleep and Aging. 2019 Meeting of the Metabolomics Society, The Hague, Netherlands June 2019 Notes: * chosen for oral presentation.

Lisa Bottalico, Amita Bansal, Rebecca Simmons, Dania Malik, Arjun Sengupta, Sai Krishnaiah, Aalim M Weljie: Gender and dose specific impacts on liver metabolome of C57BL/6J mice after direct or gestational exposure to Bisphenol A. 5th Biennial North American Society for Comparative Endocrinology, Gainesville, FL May 2019 Notes: * Recognized with Award for the Top Trainee Poster.

Dania Malik, Seth D. Rhoades, Arjun Sengupta, Paula Haynes, Shirley L. Zhang, Sunil Dhakad, Peng Song, Greg Grant, Richard G. Kibbey, Amita Sehgal, Aalim M. Weljie : An in vivo Metabolic Tracing Platform to Detect Metabolic Rhythmicity in a Circadian and Sleep Context Metabolomics Association of North America First Annual Conference, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 2019 Notes: Platform presentation.

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Last updated: 04/08/2020
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