Sebastian Behrens seeks to combine environmental biotechnology, engineering, biogeochemistry, and molecular biology. His research provides insights into the “lifestyle” of microorganisms by linking the quantification of microbiological processes to the in situ activity and dynamics of microbial populations at various temporal and spatial scales in natural and engineered environments.
Research Interests: Microbial processes for bioremediation of (in)organic environmental contaminants (mining wastes, agriculture runoff) and the recovery of valuable resources from municipal/industrial wastes.
Sebastian Behrens, PhD
Department of Civil, Environmental,
PhD, Molecular Microbial Ecology, University of Bremen, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, 2003
Chan Lan Chun
Chan Lan Chun is an environmental engineer who is interested in studying the impacts of human activities on natural water systems. Chun and her research team aim to understand chemical and microbial contaminants in natural (e.g., lakes, streams, and estuaries) and built (e.g., sewer systems, treatment facilities, and storm water system) environments, and develop improved treatment technologies and mitigation strategies.
In his research, Mikael Elias seeks to decipher the mechanisms by which biological macromolecules evolve, to understand the molecular basis of their biological functions, and to develop new methods for their engineering. Long-term, Mikael is interested in developing soft, ecological solutions to current or emerging societal issues. Methods used in the Elias Lab span from molecular biology and microbiology, to protein engineering, structural biology and bioinformatics.
Research Interests: Microbial enzymes and systems that have the potential to address industrial needs or may be useful for bio-remediation, specifically, the cellular phosphate uptake mechanism.
Satoshi Ishii aims to solve environmental problems by applying microbiology and biotechnology approaches. The current focuses of his work are (1) nitrogen pollution and (2) the occurrences of pathogens in various environments (soil, water, sediment, etc). The Ishii lab uses multiple approaches to answer fundamental and applied scientific questions, including microbiological, analytical, molecular biological, omics technologies, and engineering approaches.
Research Interests: Applied microbiology and biotechnology with focus on nitrogen pollution and occurrences of pathogens: microbiological (single-cell isolation), analytical (stable isotope analysis, microsensor measurements), molecular biological (gene manipulation), omics technologies (genomics, metagenomics, meta transcriptomics, high-throughput sequencing, bioinformatics), and engineering (bioreactors, mathematical modeling).
Cara Santelli’s research examines the impact of microbial activity on geological and environmental processes such as mineral formation, mineral alteration and weathering, metal and metalloid redox transformations, nutrient biogeochemical cycling, and the remediation of polluted environments. The research objectives of the Santelli lab are driven by conducting fundamental scientific research on environmentally relevant biogeochemical processes and key elements in nature that are further influenced by anthropogenic activities, such as mining and agriculture. In addition to answering key questions on the mechanisms, metabolic pathways, and geochemical impact of mineral-microbe interactions, their work seeks to inform and improve strategies for remediating inorganic pollutants to improve the quality and health of water and soil environments.
Research Interests: Impact of microbial activity on geological and environmental processes such as mineral formation, mineral alteration and weathering, metal and metalloid redox transformations, nutrient biogeochemical cycling, and the remediation of polluted environments. Objectives are driven by fundamental scientific research on environmentally relevant biogeochemical processes and key elements in nature influenced by anthropogenic activities such as mining and agriculture.