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Research Interests:

  • Bioremediation – combining geochemical, biological, hydrogeological, and engineering solutions to soil, sediments, groundwater, and surface water remediation
  • Aqueous biogeochemistry (freshwater and marine)
  • Fate and transport of metals and organic/inorganic chemical species in aqueous and sediment environments
  • Microbial ecology of aqueous and sediment environments

My research interests center on the fate and transport of contaminants in our environment. I study both terrestrial and marine systems in order to understand how contaminants affect not only the biogeochemistry of an ecosystem but also the microbial ecology. Contaminants that I study include heavy metals/radionuclides, hydrocarbons, dispersants, fertilizers/pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and excess nutrients. I am specifically interested in using the metabolic activities of microorganisms to aid in the remediation of containments in situ. Current and future research activities include the study of the impacts of pharmaceuticals and other emerging contaminants on Florida coastal ecosystems, the effects of excess nutrient runoff into coastal waterways, and how environmental stress (i.e., high temperature, salinity, contaminants) affects the pathogenicity and antibiotic resistance of marine microorganisms. Analytical techniques/instrumentation that I use include basic microbiological techniques (i.e., isolation, cultures, PCR, qPCR, Sanger sequencing, high throughput sequencing), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) for measuring metal concentration, high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) for analyzing the concentration of inorganic/organic chemical species, and ion chromatography (IC) for measuring cation/anion concentrations.