What we do

Research Overview

Microbiome research is among the most exciting and promising areas of science today due to many technological advances, particular in high throughput DNA and RNA sequencing, that allow us to determine in complex environments which microbes are present and their metabolism. A prominent component of our research is using genomic and computational methods to understand the ecology and evolution of gut and forest soil microbiomes. Our laboratory is set up for standard molecular biology and microbial physiology research and contains specialized equipment for isolating and culturing anaerobic bacteria. The research we do has led to the discovery of new bacterial species and metabolic processes that have have far ranging impacts from probiotics to understanding climate change. Our research is currently funded by the National Science Foundation, Department of Energy, United States Department of Agriculture, and the Morris Animal Foundation. More....

Lab News

* The complete genome sequence of Clostridium indolis, a bacterium isolated from soil and human clinical specimens associated with infections of the intestinal tract, has been published
* Congratulations to Monique on her Master's defense!
* Amy and Jeff are featured in this NSF I-Corps video. The NCIIA site also features the video under What is I-Corps?
* Amy's equine microbiome project will be funded through a CVIP development award - Probiotics for Equine Digestive Health
* Gigi's paper is out Strong genome-wide selection early in the evolution of Prochlorococcus resulted in a reduced genome through the loss of a large number of small effect genes
* Supratim's recent paper Population Level Analysis of Evolved Mutations Underlying Improvements in Plant Hemicellulose and Cellulose Fermentation by Clostridium phytofermentans was written up for the DOE JGI Highlights
* Our collaborative proposal with Jerry Melillo and Kristen DeAngelis on "Changes in Soil Carbon Dynamics in Response to Long-Term Soil Warming – Integration Across Scales from Cells to Ecosystems" has been funded by the Department of Energy