About the Lab

The Geomicrobial Physiology lab at CU Boulder consists of a diverse group of researchers from the geological, environmental and microbiological sciences focused on discovering how microorganisms grow in their natural habitats, how they respond to environmental change, and how they produce various types of molecular and isotopic biomarkers - traces of life that are preserved in the environment for millions and sometimes billions of years. The combination of these three lines of scientific inquiry enables us to better reconstruct past environments and helps us predict how microbial life will respond to future change. We also do a fair bit of tools development for geochemical data processing and experimental design in microbiology and strive to make all of our lab designs and software open-source and easily available to advance the pace of discovery. Check out our research, publications, resources, and opportunities for more information.

Recent News

13
November
2019

Rocky Mountain Geobiology Symposium

Just announced: the 4th annual Rocky Mountain Geobiology Symposium will be taking place on April 11 2020 at the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, Colorado. Mark your calendars for this great opportunity to meet all kinds of bio & geo enthusiasts and hear about the research done across the Rocky Mountain states. Abstract submission deadline is February 29.

15
September
2019

Welcome Joely, Elder, Toby, Jamie and Emma

Welcome to our new undergraduate research assistants Joely Depoy and Alec Elder who joined us in the spring and summer respectively and are back in the lab working on culturing exciting new soil microbes, new graduate student Toby Halamka who is tackling soil lipid biomarkers, postdoc Jamie McFarlin working closely with collaborators in CU’s Institute for Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR) on arctic paleoclimate, and postdoc Emma Bertran working on a joint project on nitrogen biochemistry with the Zhang lab at the Princeton Environmental Institute. Excited to have you all and looking forward to the fun science ahead.

1
September
2019

Lab expansion renovations begin

The joint Geomicrobial Physiology & Evolution culturing lab is expanding! The new space is right next to the existing culturing lab and is scheduled to finish at the end of the year. We look forward to the new space and getting everything up and running in the new year.

15
July
2019

Collaborative proposal on archaeal lipid biomarkers funded

Our collaborative proposal with the Leavitt lab at Dartmouth into the isotopic signatures of archaeal lipid biomarkers got funded by NSF. This will be a fantastic collaboration that has been several years in the planning and we look very much forward to working closely with the team at Dartmouth.

20
April
2019

Postdoc position on Nitrogenase biogeochmistry (filled)

We have an opening for a postdoc at the Princeton Environmental Institute as part of a NASA funded project to the Zhang and Kopf labs to study microbial biogeochemistry of the nitrogen cycle. Update: this position has now been filled. Thank you to all applicants for your interest.