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Jon Preall, PhD

Research Associate Professor, Head of Genomics Technology Development, Director, Single-Cell Biology Shared Resource Cancer Center, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Former Lab: Doctoral Candidate, Sontheimer Lab, Northwestern University
Training Period: 2004 - 2009
Prior Academic Degree Institution: Cornell University
Awards: Northwestern University Presidential Fellowship 


Biology is inescapably a study of diversity. Understanding complex biological systems, both in health and in disease, requires the deconvolution of a heterogeneous milieu into its constituent parts. New experimental tools have made it possible to investigate gene expression, chromatin architecture, and genetic alterations in thousands of single cells simultaneously. These technologies have revolutionized how we approach biological problems by granting the ability to measure interactions within the diverse cellular mixture comprising a tumor microenvironment, a developing stem cell niche, a complex organ such as the brain, or an immune response. The Preall Lab deploys and develops single-cell technologies and other high-throughput genomics workflows to explore biological diversity at high resolution. Using single-cell transcriptome profiling, the lab has characterized fibroblast populations that coordinate tissue remodeling within pancreatic tumors and govern interactions between cancerous cells, signals driving their growth, and surveillance by the immune system. The Preall lab is also developing technology to push single cell capabilities towards larger and larger cell numbers to enable massive scale studies of the immune repertoire across patient cohorts and over time.

Preall Lab