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#chempack Series: Baker Research Group

Up next on our #chempack feature series is the Baker Research Group!

The Baker Research Group members

Dr. Erin Baker is an associate professor of analytical chemistry who joined WolfPack in 2018 (Wahoo!!). She is a farm girl from Montana who loves all creatures including snakes, cows, peacocks, possums, and dogs. A couple of fun facts are that in high school she finished 10th in the state in the 100-meter dash and her girls’ basketball team won the state championship 3 times.

Dr. Erin Baker wearing goggles and a lab coat smiling
Erin Baker in the lab, a rare and scary sight 😉

The Baker Lab currently has one postdoctoral researcher (Dr. James Dodds), and 8 graduates (Karen Butler, Melanie Odenkirk, Allison Stewart, Kaylie Kirkwood, Makayla Foster, Michael Doyle, Jack Ryan, and Rebecca Beres), and 5 undergraduate students.

The Baker Group’s overall goal is to gain an in-depth understanding of how chemical exposure affects human health by measuring changes in metabolites, lipids and proteins, and the xenobiotics themselves. Some of their exciting new directions include measuring molecular disruptions in alligators and sea lions to evaluate environmental contamination.

Graphic Poster of Baker's group goal to gain in-depth understanding of how chemical exposure affects human health
The current Baker Research Group and examples of the omic analyses and data visualizations they perform.

Karen BUTLER is an amazingly talented analytical student who loves teaching, instrumental platforms, and method development. Karen’s research has spanned from the evaluation of protein post-translational modifications to the rapid detection of opioids. Karen is headed to the FDA in October 2021 to use her skills to optimize allergen analyses. Karen will be defending her Ph.D. thesis on Sept 17th, 2021.

Karen Butler smiling carrying her research poster
Karen Butler presenting at the Young Investigators Summit sponsored by Waters Corporation.

Nancy Abdelrahman is a senior undergraduate RESEARCHER who will be graduating in December 2021. While Nancy did not know it before starting undergraduate research, she has a great aptitude and passion for computational evaluations. Thus, over the last two years, she has utilized KNIME and R to explore how lipid molecular descriptors affect normal and reverse-phase liquid chromatography separations. This work is allowing her to optimize retention time predictions and provide more confident lipid identifications. Nancy has a great interest in cosmetic chemistry and is currently exploring job options.

Nancy Abdelrahman wearing red shoes posing next to her research poster
Nancy Abdelrahman showcasing her research at the NCSU Labapalooza.

#ChemPack features are a series of tweets that aims at highlighting a research group of our department to display the ongoing rich and diverse research. #ChemPack features are prepared by the department’s communication committee – stay on the lookout for our next one! If you’d like your lab to be featured, please reach out to Nada Taylor at