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


Kick-off for the Center for Microbial Exploration (CME) at CU Boulder

Fantastic kick-off event for CU’s new Center for Microbial Exploration connecting faculty and students interested in microbial research across the campus. Check out upcoming events on the CME website.


Registration now open for the 2019 Rocky Mountain Geobiology Symposium

We are pleased to announce that the third annual Rocky Mountain Geobiology Symposium will be hosted at the University of Colorado Boulder campus on Saturday, April 6, 2019. Registration is now open! We look forward to welcoming you at CU Boulder.


Shaelyn's first paper out in print!

Silverman SN, Kopf SH, Bebout BM, Gordon R, Som SM. Morphological and isotopic changes of heterocystous cyanobacteria in response to N2 partial pressure. Geobiology. 2019;17:60–75. Congratulations to Shae, first student-lead paper from the lab! All data and analysis available on GitHub. Explore them interactively on Binder Binder.


Launch of the isoverse

Isoverse is a suite of platform-independent (Windows, Mac, Linux), open-source data tools for the efficient and reproducible processing of stable isotope data. Although written primarily in R, it can be used in both RMarkdown as well as Jupyter data processing notebooks. Due to the design based on the popular tidyverse style of R programming, all isoverse packages are easily extendable and work great with tidyverse packages such as tidyr, dplyr and ggplot. It includes isoreader to read IRMS data files, isoprocessor to perform common calculations on IRMS data, and isoviewer to process files interactively... read more

New labware: balch tube tower

The Tube Tower is a flexible 3D printer layout for small foot print vertical incubation of anaerobic (i.e. stoppered & crimp-sealed) balch culture tubes. Gas exchange between media and headspace is maximized due to the horizontal position of the tubes. Tubes are secured in place with a 6” (15.2cm) wide 1/8” (3.2mm) thick standard acryl panel that slides in from... read more