About Us

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

SFA Lead Scientist

Rhona Stuart Rhona Stuart, SFA Technical Co-Manager
  • Marine microbiology, phycology, & ecology
  • Proteomics integration with stable isotope tracing
  • Fluorescence in-Situ Hybridization (FISH)

Scientific Leads

Jennifer Pett-Ridge Jennifer Pett-Ridge, Plant-Microbial Interactions
  • Environmental microbial ecology
  • Isotope tracing/NanoSIMS & plant-microbe interactions
  • DOE Early Career Fellow
Peter Weber Peter Weber, New Methods Development, NanoSIMS lead scientist
  • Geochemistry, microanalysis, & isotopic analyses
  • High resolution imaging
Xavier Mayali Xavier Mayali, Algal-Bacterial Interactions
  • Aquatic microbial ecology & biogeochemistry
  • Algae-bacteria culturing & characterization
  • Chip-SIP technology development
Ali Navid Ali Navid, Computational Modeling
  • Advanced scientific computing
  • In silico models of cellular processes at genome-scale
  • Predictive multi-objective models of metabolism in communities
Erin Nuccio Erin Nuccio,Plant-Microbial Interactions, Bioinformatics
  • Root-rhizosphere transcriptomics
  • Network analysis
  • Stable Isotope Probing


Patrik Dhaeseleer Patrik D’haeseleer
  • Bioinformatics
  • Computational biologist
  • Meta-‘omics analysis & systems biology of communities
Jeff Kimbrel Jeff Kimbrel
  • Plant-microbial interactions
  • Bioinformatics & computational biology
Ty Samo Ty Samo
  • Algae-bacteria culturing
  • Growth analyses using bulk and single-cell approaches
Steve Blazewicz Steve Blazewicz
  • Plant-microbial interactions
  • Quantitative Stable Isotope Probing (qSIP)
  • Isotope tracing with 13C, 15N and 18O

Postdoctoral Scientists

Vanessa Brisson Vanessa Brisson
  • Metabolomics
  • Bioinformatics
  • Plant-microbe interactions
Rachel Hestrin Rachel Hestrin
  • Plant-microbe interactions
  • Mycorrhizal fungi
  • Terrestrial biogeochemistry
  • Plant resilience to stress
Megan Morris Megan Morris
  • Algal-bacterial interactions
  • Microbial ecology
  • Metagenomics
Helena Van Tol

Helena Van Tol

  • Algal-bacterial interactions
  • Metabolic modeling
  • Computational biology

Staff Scientists

Jessica Wollard Jessica Wollard
  • Laboratory manager
  • Molecular & microbial techniques
Christina Ramon
Christina Ramon
  • Electron Microscopy
  • Sample preparation, embedding, & sectioning
Kristina Rolison
Kristina Rolison
  • Algal culturing
  • Microbial culturing
  • Outdoor algal management
Megan Kan
Megan Kan
  • Soil microbial ecology
  • Mycorrhizal fungi
  • Molecular techniques
Courtney Swink

Courtney Swink

  • Algal-bacterial interactions
  • Algal microbiome
  • Algal culturing
  • Molecular techniques
Rebecca Ju

Rebecca Ju

  • Plant-microbe interactions
  • Mycorrhizal fungi
  • Molecular techniques

Sandia National Laboratories (Livermore)

Todd Lane
Todd Lane, Distinguished Member, Sandia Technical Staff
  • Applied phycology & molecular genetics of microalgae
  • Automated analysis of next-gen sequencing for communities
  • Macronutrient recycling to promote sustainable algal biomass production

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Eoin Brodie
Eoin Brodie, Deputy Director, LBL Climate & Ecosystem Sciences Division
  • Environmental microbial ecology & community dynamics
  • Technologies for multi-scale analysis of microbial diversity and function
  • Development of trait-based models to represent microbial interactions
Noele Norris
Noele Norris, Postdoctoral Scientist
  • Algae-bacterial interactions
  • Mechanistic metabolic models
  • Trait-based ecosystem models

University of California, Berkeley

Sabeeha Merchant
Sabeeha Merchant, Distinguished Professor of Biochemistry
  • Chlamydomonas biology, bioenergetics, & molecular genetics
  • Physiology of trace metals and elements in Chlamydomonas
  • Bacterial impact on expression of the algal genome

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cullen Buie
Cullen Buie, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering
  • Microscale flow physics for materials science and microbiology
  • Fluid mechanics, phenotyping in microfluidics
Hyungseok Kim
Hyungseok Kim, Graduate Student
  • Microfluidics & electrochemical applications to microbial interactions
  • Dielectrophoretic technology development for energy applications

North Carolina State University

Christine Hawkes
Christine Hawkes, Associate Professor of Integrative Biology
  • Ecology and evolution of plant-microbe interactions
  • Effects of symbiotic fungi on grass physiology
  • Community and ecosystem drivers and impacts of microbiomes

Oregon State University

Rene Boiteau

Rene Boiteau, Assistant Professor

  • Organic Biogeochemistry
  • Trace metal cycling
Nicole Coffey

Nicole Coffey, Graduate Student

  • Trace metal cycling

Alumni—Former Postdocs and Students

Yongqin Jiao
Daniel Nilson
Haifeng Geng
Javier Ceja-Navarro
Dagmar Woebken
Luke Burow
Catherine Lacayo
Jeremy Bougoure
Jackson Lee
Craig Everroad
Daniel Nilson
Marc Griesemer
Haifeng Geng
Adam Chorazyczewski
Miriam Windler
Christopher Ward
Yiwei Cheng
Carolyn Fisher
Marissa Lee
Katie Harding
Colleen Hui
Rachel Neurath


Brad Bebout
Lee Prufert-Bebout
Craig Everroad
Angela Detweiler
Carol Zhou
Meredith Blackwell
Oana Marcu
Anne Dekas
Alfred Spormann
Michael Thelen
Mary Lipton
Paul Zimba
Trent Northen