Kimberly Beatty (email: beattyk [at] ohsu)

Current Position:

Professor of Chemical Biology, OHSU


UC Santa Barbara (B.S. in Biochemistry)

California Institute of Technology (Ph.D. in Chemistry, minor in Biology)


Walnut Creek, CA


Research Background and Interests:

As an undergraduate, I majored in Biochemistry at UC Santa Barbara.  I entered college knowing that I wanted to be a scientist.  In addition to taking classes, I had the opportunity to do research with Prof. Alison Butler on vanadium bromoperoxidases.  Additionally, I did two internships off campus- at the UC Davis Medical Center and Genentech.  These research experiences encouraged me to pursue a PhD in chemical biology, and I joined the graduate program in Chemistry at Caltech in 2002.  In 2008, I completed my thesis research with Prof. David Tirrell.  My studies there focused on developing novel methods for imaging subsets of cellular proteomes using azide-alkyne ligations (i.e., "click chemistry").  Next, I did a postdoc at UC Berkeley with Prof. Carolyn Bertozzi.  In her group, I created a new approach towards studying enzyme biomarkers in tuberculosis using fluorogenic probes.  Throughout my training, I was fortunate to work with brilliant, collaborative colleagues. 

In 2012, I established my independent research program at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon.  My research program is focused on the development of chemical tools to understand the molecular basis of human diseases.  Much of my research is disease-centered technology development, with an emphasis on studying tuberculosis (TB) and breast cancer.  Together with my research team and collaborators, I have undertaken the following projects: 

Project 1: Chemical tools for analyzing enzyme classes in Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb).

Project 2: A new technology for tracking and mapping proteins by light and electron microscopy. 

Project 3: Identifying molecular interactions that confer drug resistance in breast cancer.

Project 4: Synthesis of new fluorescent and fluorogenic probes. 

My research findings have been published in various peer-reviewed journals.  My most recent work can be found in: Biochemistry, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, ChemBioChem, ACS Chemical Biology, Chem. Comm., and ACS Infectious Disease

I have received generous funding support for my program from the Knight Cancer Institute, the OHSU School of Medicine, and the National Institute of Health (NIGMS and NIAID). 

The most rewarding aspect of my career is working with all of my talented collaborators, including my current research team (Hutchinson, Devlin, Dohanue, and Brooks), former lab members (Tallman, Levine, Doh, Zane, Dearing, Suyama, and others), and Profs. Gyanu Lamichhane (JHU), Vivian Lin (PNNL), Caroline Enns (OHSU), Jim Korkola (OHSU), and Claudia Lopez (OHSU).