Laura Muehlbauer

Scientist, Eli Lilly

hailing from

Chaska, Minnesota


St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minnesota

Ph.D. Studies


Title of Ph.D. Dissertation

Improvement of Mass Spectrometry-based Multi-omics and Applications to Complex Biological Systems

How was your time in the Coon lab?

It’s an amazing lab in that it’s really efficient but also a really fun environment. Even while people are focused on their own projects, they’re extremely willing to help others, whether it’s new students or someone new to an instrument. I’m not sure that people realize that you can still be as productive and as well-known as the Coon lab and happy at the same time. Prof. Coon has a lot to do with this happiness, I think. He makes sure we get high-level work done like a successful PI in the traditional sense, but he also has a way of lightening tension with jokes and stories for laughs.

“It’s an amazing lab in that it’s really efficient but also a really fun environment.”

What project did you start with?

I worked on an activated-ion ETD project with a chemical engineering lab. This project looked at the human gut microbiome. We’ studied the proteomics and metabolomics of twelve strains of bacteria that this lab had identified as playing a big role in the gut microbiome. The ultimate goal was to mix all twelve strains to study their interactions, which is a challenge from a quantitative MS point of view. It was a good starter project for me to get expertise in instrumentation.

Earn your Ph.D. with us

The Coon Group is always on the lookout for new members.  Professor Coon accepts students from several UW-Madison doctoral programs including Chemistry, the Integrated Program in Biochemistry (IPiB), and Cellular & Molecular Pathology.