About Ben Orsburn

I received my Ph.D. in Biology from Virginia Tech, mostly by doing MS-based small molecule elucidation and quantification, with a little bit of proteomics.  Afterward I held 2 postdoctoral positions, the first at Johns Hopkins and the second at the National Cancer Institute before taking a Staff Scientist position at the NIAID.  What I do now and who I work for isn't quite relevant to this blog.

My research at the NCI dealt with investigating the mechanism of action of chemotherapeutics slated for clinical trials via genomics and proteomics.  Since this would leave very few opportunities to publish, I started this blog in order to stay current and attempt to stay relevant to the field.  It still hasn't seemed like a bad idea, so I've never stopped.

These days -- I'm a hobbyist scientist. I do global proteomics and untargeted metabolomics mostly for fun. I knock out a few papers here and there on things I personally find really interesting. I keep thinking I need to come up with some other kind of indoor hobby, but it still hasn't ever happened!

If you'd like to reach me, the best way is to place a comment on the blog post of interest, or send me a direct email:  orsburn@vt.edu

If you are in the Maryland or Washington D.C. area you will probably receive a response from my, or a colleague's official work email address.


  1. Hi Osburn, your videos are quite useful. I have worked with small molecules since last 17 years and now learning Bio-smilar and a bit of proteomics application. Can you tell me how to identify which compounds have gone through neutral loass and the respected neutral loss in chromatogram.

  2. Awesome blog and video. I tried to get some info for intact protein using QE and found your blog. May ask you more about if in the future. BTW, why you set up blog using .ca? which make me think that you are in Canada.

  3. Hi,
    Thanks for you comments. The blog is up on blogger.com, but it is mirrored on blogger.ca as well as 13 other countries, I think. I think it saves bandwidth for Google or something (and they really run this thing, I just write the words in the boxes!)

  4. Great blog! Keep it going!!!

  5. Hi Ben,

    Great Blog and How To Videos!

  6. I wouldn't have believed reading about MS/proteomics could be fun. Thanks for showing me that it can.

  7. Ben, just stumbled upon your blog... what a nice surprise! so many questions I have asked myself in many years, all condensed into one blog! I'll keep track of this blog... and throw you some (trivial) questions whenever I can.

  8. Thanks for all the positive feedback, everybody! Its great to do something I enjoy and for other people to somehow get something out of it!

  9. Hi Ben,

    I noticed you (re)tweeted a few videos that we put up on youtube from our recent Targeted Proteomics Course (http://targetedproteomics.ethz.ch/) hosted by the Aebersold group in Zurich. There is a now a youtube playlist which has all 21 video lectures from this course in the correct order:


    Maybe you readers would be intersted in hearing about it? Nice blog by the way!

    All the best,
    Ben Collins

  10. Dear Ben,

    We made this great video about proteomics for the Hecklab in Utrecht. Maybe you would like to share it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1G6jTGAfgUc



  11. Surprised you never make mention of ASX: PIQ on the west coast of Australia?

    1. I'd never heard of it until you wrote this! Where did this come from? How are they doing all that stuff with MALDI...? I will investigate! Thanks!!

  12. Hi Ben,
    A quick question. Is PD2.1 a good tool for intact protein search? Thank you very much!


  13. Ben,
    I'm trying to figure out how the label free node/workflow for PD 2.1 calculates protein abundance from peptides? Can you point me in the right direction?
    Cliff Phaneuf