University of Calgary

Ian Lewis

  • Associate Professor
  • Biochemistry

Research Interests

Infectious diseases account for the majority of deaths in developing countries and are among the ten leading causes of mortality in Alberta. The emergence of diverse drug resistant pathogens has made finding new antimicrobial therapies both a Canadian and global health priority. My laboratory investigates the connection between metabolic adaptation and virulence of human pathogens. The ultimate goal of this research is to develop new diagnostic methods to identify high risk patients and novel antimicrobial therapies to control infections. One of the key challenges my laboratory faces is unraveling the complex host-pathogen metabolic dynamics that occur during infections. To address this challenge, we use state-of-the-art mass spectrometry (MS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) technology to comprehensively quantify the flow of molecules between pathogens and their hosts. This metabolomics approach is a powerful strategy for connecting metabolic phenomena with specific genes and is essential for understanding the metabolic determinants of virulence.

Current research topics·  

• Precision infection management (PIM)

• Metabolic adaptations in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

• Hemoglobin metabolism in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

• New analytical tools for identifying and quantifying metabolites in complex mixtures   

Selected Awards

Alberta Innovates Chair in Translational Health, Alberta Innovates Health Solutions (2015)

Graduate Mentoring Award (2007)

Selected Publications

Lewis Research Group -

The Alberta Precision Exchange (APEX) -

ResistanceDB -

IMPACTT Microbiome Research Core -

Google Scholar Link

 “Metabolite Measurement: Pitfalls to Avoid and Practices to Follow”. Wenyun Lu, Xiaoyang Su, Matthias S. Klein, Ian A. Lewis, Oliver Fiehn, and Joshua D. Rabinowitz. Annual review of Biochemistry. 86:277-304 (2017)
“Editorial overview: Recent innovations in the metabolomics revolution.” Jurre J Kamphorst and Ian A Lewis. Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 43:iv-vii (2017).

“Digestomics: an emerging strategy for comprehensive analysis of protein catabolism.” Travis S Bingeman, David H Perlman, Douglas G Storey, Ian A. Lewis. Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 43:134-140 (2017).

“Evolution of Fitness Cost-Neutral Mutant PfCRT Conferring P. falciparum 4-Aminoquinoline Drug Resistance Is Accompanied by Altered Parasite Metabolism and Digestive Vacuole Physiology.” Stanislaw J. Gabryszewski, Satish K. Dhingra, Jill M. Combrinck, Ian A. Lewis, Paul S. Callaghan, Matthew R. Hassett, Amila Siriwardana, Philipp P. Henrich, Andrew H. Lee, Nina F. Gnädig, Lise Musset, Manuel Llinás, Timothy J. Egan, Paul D. Roepe, David A. Fidock. PLoS Pathogens, 12(11): e1005976 (2016).

“Genetic Investigation of Tricarboxylic Acid Metabolism during the Plasmodium falciparum Life Cycle.” Hangjun Ke, Ian A Lewis, Joanne M Morrisey, Kyle J McLean, Suresh M Ganesan, Heather J Painter, Michael W Mather, Marcelo Jacobs-Lorena, Manuel Llinás, Akhil B Vaidya. Cell Reports, 11 (1): 164-174 (2015).

“Hierarchy in Pentose Sugar Metabolism in Clostridium Acetobutylicum.” Aristilde, L., Ludmilla Aristilde, Ian A Lewis, Junyoung O Park, Joshua D Rabinowitz - Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 81 (4): 1452-1462 (2015).

“Metabolic QTL Analysis Links Chloroquine Resistance in Plasmodium falciparum to Impaired Hemoglobin Catabolism.” Ian A Lewis, Mark Wacker, Kellen L Olszewski, Simon A Cobbold, Katelynn S Baska, Asako Tan, Michael T Ferdig, Manuel Llinás - PLoS Genetics, 10 (1): e1004085 (2014).

“Kinetic Flux Profiling Elucidates Two Independent Acetyl-CoA Biosynthetic Pathways in Plasmodium falciparum.” Simon A Cobbold, Ashley M Vaughan, Ian A Lewis, Heather J Painter, Nelly Camargo, David H Perlman, Matthew Fishbaugher, Julie Healer, Alan F Cowman, Stefan HI Kappe, Manuel Llinás. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 288 (51): 36338-36350 (2013).

“Relationship between Treatment-seeking Behaviour and Artemisinin Drug Quality in Ghana.” Eili Y Klein, Ian A Lewis, Christina Jung, Manuel Llinás, Simon A Levin - Malaria Journal, 11: 110 (2012).

“Semiautomated Device for Batch Extraction of Metabolites from Tissue Samples.” James J Ellinger, Dan C Miller, Ian A Lewis, John L Markley - Analytical Chemistry, 84 (4): 1809-1812.

“Novel NMR and MS Approaches to Metabolomics.” Ian A Lewis, Michael R Shortreed, Adrian D Hegeman, John L Markley - The Handbook of Metabolomics: 199-230 (2012).

“Role of Aminotransferases in Glutamate Metabolism of Human Erythrocytes.” James J Ellinger, Ian A Lewis, John L Markley - Journal of Biomolecular NMR, 49 (3-4): 221-229 (2011).

“Method and System for Determining Compound Concentration in a Mixture using Regression of NMR Intensity Peak Values.” John L Markley, Ian A Lewis, William M Westler, Qiu Cui, Gabriel Cornilescu, Marco Tonelli - US Patent 7,847,547 (2010).

“NMR Method for Measuring Carbon-13 Isotopic Enrichment of Metabolites in Complex Solutions.” Ian A Lewis, Ryan H Karsten, Mark E Norton, Marco Tonelli, William M Westler, John L Markley - Analytical Chemistry, 82 (11), 4558-4563 (2010).

“Novel Methods for Identifying and Quantifying Metabolites in Complex Biological Extracts by Multidimensional Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy.” Ian A Lewis. PhD Dissertation - University of Wisconsin-Madison (2010).

“rNMR: Open Source Software for Identifying and Quantifying Metabolites in NMR Spectra.” Ian A Lewis, Seth C Schommer, John L Markley - Magnetic Resonance in Chemistry, 47 (S1): S123-S126 (2009).

“Role of Band 3 in Regulating Metabolic Flux of Red Blood Cells.” Ian A Lewis, M Estela Campanella, John L Markley, Philip S Low - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106 (44): 18515-18520 (2009).

“Metabolite Identification via the Madison Metabolomics Consortium Database.” Qiu Cui, Ian A Lewis, Adrian D Hegeman, Mark E Anderson, Jing Li, Christopher F Schulte, William M Westler, Hamid R Eghbalnia, Michael R Sussman, John L Markley - Nature Biotechnology, 26 (2): 162-164 (2008).

“Method for Determining Molar Concentrations of Metabolites in Complex Solutions from Two-Dimensional 1H-13C NMR Spectra.” Ian A Lewis, Seth C Schommer, Brendan Hodis, Kate A Robb, Marco Tonelli, William M Westler, Michael R Sussman, John L Markley - Analytical Chemistry, 79 (24): 9385-9390 (2007)

“Stable Isotope Assisted Assignment of Elemental Compositions for Metabolomics.” Adrian D Hegeman, Christopher F Schulte, Qiu Cui, Ian A Lewis, Edward L Huttlin, Hamid Eghbalnia, Amy C Harms, Eldon L Ulrich, John L Markley, Michael R Sussman - Analytical Chemistry, 79 (18): 6912-6921 (2007).

“New Bioinformatics Resources for Metabolomics.” John L Markley, Mark E Anderson, Qiu Cui, Hamid Eghbalnia, Ian A Lewis, Adrian D Hegeman, Jing Li, Christopher F Schulte, Michael R Sussman, William M Westler, Eldon L Ulrich, Zsolt Zolnai - Pacific Symposium on Biocomputing, 12: 157-168 (2007).


  • PD
    Princeton University, 2014
  • PhD
    University of Wisconsin–Madison, 2010
  • BS Summa Cum Laude - Biology
    Fort Lewis College, 2003
Powered by UNITIS. More features.