Group Members








Summer 2011.  From left to right: Tim Mattes, Yang Oh Jin, Yi Liang, Joshua Livermore, Christine Lee, Alex Potter, and Meredith Dobson.

Current Students

Yang Oh Jin
Yang joined the group in Spring 2005.  He defended his dissertation in March 2009. His PhD work addresses the mechanisms involved in the evolution of vinyl chloride (VC)-assimilating bacteria . He is now a postdoctoral student working on our SERDP contract.

Joshua Livermore
Joshua joined the group in Spring 2008. He is a PhD candidate studying how subsurface microbial communities in RDX-contaminated groundwater respond to biostimulation with acetate.

Yi Liang

Yi joined the group in Fall 2008.  She is a PhD candidate analyzing PCB-contaminated sediments for the presence and activity of PCB-degrading bacteria with PCR-based and proteomics techniques.

Meredith Dobson

Meredith joined the group in Fall 2009.  She is a MS student developing real-time PCR methods for quantifying methanotroph abundance at VC-contaminated sites.

Christine Lee

Christine joined the group in Fall 2010.  She is a MS student working on VC degradation by methanotrophs and etheneotrophs in the presence of methane and ethene mixtures.

Alex Potter

Alex is an undergraduate civil and environmental engineering student who joined our group in Fall 2010. He is working closely with Yang on our SERDP contract.


Former Students

PhD graduates

Anne Alexander
Anne received her PhD in December 2010.  Her project involved discovering and characterizing biocatalysts from with the aptly named Polaromonas sp. strain JS666, the only known cDCE-assimilating microbe.  She is currently a postdoctoral student in Jerry Schnoor's lab here at UIowa.

Adina Chuang
Adina defended her dissertation in August 2009 and is currently a postdoctoral student working with James Tiedje at Michigan State University.

MS graduates

Carmen Owens
Carmen joined the group in Fall 2006.  She investigated theproduct toxicity of epoxyalkane production by alkene monooxygenase in Nocardioides sp. strain JS614.  Carmen defended her MS thesis in December 2008 (Congratulations Carmen!) and is currently working in Keri Hornbuckle's lab.

Undergraduates and rotating students

Stefanie Schmidt
Stefanie worked in my lab from 2007 - 2010, initially as an undergraduate student.  She specialized in PCR, cloning, and sequencing of functional genes from etheneotrophs and methanotrophs in environmental samples
. She is currently working for Bio-Research Products in North Liberty,a company that makes enzymes for medical diagnostics procedures.

Aaron Liao

Aaron, an undergraduate student, worked with Josh and Adina on projects from 2008-2009.

Stephanie Fleckenstein

Stephanie, was an undergraduate Environmental Engineering student, who worked with Adina and Anne from 2008-2009.

Laura Badtke

Laura was a Biosciences PhD student that rotated in our lab for about 10 weeks in the Fall of 2008. 

Julie Karceski

Julie was a chemical engineering undergraduate that worked in the group from 2005 - 2007.

Jenna Grady

Jenna, an undergraduate, worked with us in 2007 and 2007.

Andrea Rogers

Andrea was the first student to work with me upon my arrival.  She spent time with the group from 2004 - 2006.


Past lab group photos

Fall 2008.  From left to right: Tim Mattes, Yang Oh Jin, Stephanie Fleckenstein, Josh Livermore, Adina Chuang, Aaron Liao, Laura Badtke, Yi Liang, and Carmen Owens.  Not pictured: Stefanie Schmidt and Anne Alexander.

Spring 2008.  From left to right: Tim Mattes, Yang Oh Jin, Stephanie Schmidt, Stefanie Fleckenstein, Josh Livermore, Adina Chuang, Anne Alexander, and Carmen Owens

Fall 2007.  From left to right, me, Stefanie Schmidt, Julie Karceski, Anne Alexander, Carmen Owens, Yang Oh Jin, and Adina Chuang.

Group Photo

Summer 2007 (At the ASM conference in Toronto). From left to right: Anne Schwarzkopf, Yang Oh Jin, Tim Mattes, Adina Chuang, and Carmen Owens

Group Photo - Summer 2006

Summer 2006. From left to right: Andrea Rogers, Adina Chuang, Jenna Grady, Anne Schwarzkopf, Yang Oh Jin, Tim Mattes

Group Photo - Fall 2005

Fall 2005. From left to right: Yang Oh Jin, Andrea Rogers, Adina Chuang, Anne Schwarzkopf, Tim Mattes

More pictures

Fall 2008. Having some pizza before lab meeting.

Spring 2008. Josh Livermore and I learning how to extract DNA from groundwater microbes concentrated onto Sterivex filters.

Spring 2008.  Adina analyzing data from the tandem mass spectrometer.

Spring 2008.  Anne and Stephanie working with pure cultures in the sterile hood.

Spring 2008.  Carmen working on the laptop.

Spring 2008.  Yang holding a bottle of one of his VC-adapted Mycobacterium cultures.

Spring 2008.  Another picture of Yang hard at work in the sterile hood.


Fall 2007.  Action shot of Julie working in the lab.  We grow our pure cultures in those custom erlenmeyer flasks.  Julie was an uindergraduate Chemical engineering student who graduated in December 2007.  She worked on biotransformation of gaseous alkenes by Nocardioides sp. strain JS614.

Winter 2008. Action shot of Laura Rogers in the midst of cloning DNA. Laura is a first-year PhD student in the Biosciences who rotated in my lab for 8 weeks.  She investigated the potential for biodegradation of PCBs in sediments using molecular biology tools.

© 2007 The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA. All rights reserved.