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Kirsten Hofmockel is an assistant professor in the Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology Department at Iowa State University.  She directs the Microbial Ecology Laboratory, which focuses on connecting microscale mechanism to ecosystem-scale biogeochemical processes.
khof@iastate.edu
515-294-2589

I am a PhD Candidate in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Program. I am interested in the effect of environmental gradients and land management on microbial community abundance and activity and, in turn, how changes in microbial communities feedback to influence nutrient cycling. My research focuses on the effect of alternative biomass cropping systems on carbon and nitrogen cycling, with specific focus on denitrification at the Landscape Biomass Project @ the Uthe Farm.
Email: sharg(at)iastate.edu
Website: http://sharg.public.iastate.edu

I am a Ph. D. student interested in soil microbial community function and prairie restoration. Specifically, I am measuring the effects of soil aggregate size distribution and pore space distribution within aggregates on soil enzyme activity and organic matter turn-over. My research is based at the Iowa State Comparison of Biofuel Systems (COBS) research site, examining the economic and ecological benefits of utilizing diverse prairie systems as a potential bioenergy feedstock. I am also involved in several prairie restoration and management activities.

Website: www.soilorganicmatters.org

I am a Ph. D. student interested in the effect of microbial community processes on ecosystem processes. By working in soil I hope to strengthen our knowledge about interactions between physical, chemical, and biological processes at different scales. More specifically, I study the link between soil microbial activity and greenhouse gas emissions (CO2, CH4, and N2O) in agro-ecosystems at the Uthe Farm Landscape Biomass Project.

For more details check out:
http://ryanw.public.iastate.edu/

My Masters research focuses on the implications of conventional crop rotations and diversified, low external input crop rotations for soil nutrient cycling at Marsden Farm in Boone County, Iowa. I use measures of soil microbial biomass and enzyme activity throughout the growing season to study the pools and processes that drive nitrogen availability. The overarching goal of my research is to understand the belowground processes underpinning sustainable agricultural systems.

Email: aeking (at) iastate (dot) edu

I’m a soil microbial ecologist interested in the mechanisms underlying the structure and diversity of soil-born bacterial and fungal communities. Specifically, I seek to provide new insights into how specific soil parameters, such as habitat connectivity as determined by soil structure and hydration status influence microbial interactions as well as bacterial and fungal community structure at scales relevant to microbes, which are the aggregate and pore scale. In my research I combine culturing approaches and microcosm experimentation with field-surveys and high-throughput sequencing techniques.
My current research goal is to contribute to a better understanding of the contributions of microbial diversity to ecosystem functioning. Specifically, I aim at gaining new insights into the relationships between soil structure, microbial community composition and ecosystem carbon cycling by combining lab experiments and field-surveys.

Email: awolf@iastate.edu

I am a Ph.D. student in the Interdepartmental Microbiology program. My research focuses on determining the key microbial organisms involved in C cycling, particularly cellulose degradation. I use a combination of field experiments, to determine the impact of plant/soil interactions on microbial cellulose degradation, and lab incubations with fluorescently labeled cellulose nanocrystals to directly determine the key microbes involved in C cycling.

Email - rnerb@iastate.edu

I am a Research Associate II in Kirsten Hofmockel’s lab and am responsible for organization and coordination of the day-to-day lab and fieldwork activities for the postdoctoral researchers, graduate students, and undergraduate research assistants. My background is in microbial ecology with an interest in how microbial diversity and function in a broad range of ecosystems is impacted by human activities such as agriculture, eutrophication and climate change.

Email- bellsl@iastate.edu

I am a microbial ecologist in Kirsten Hofmockel’s lab with broad interests in ecosystem processes, microbial communities, plant-microbe symbiotic relationships, and nutrient cycling.
More specifically, my research focuses on the long-term consequences of organic amendments and crop-system diversification on soil microbial community composition, as well as the metabolically active populations involved in carbon and nitrogen transformations.
By combining microcosm experiments with high-throughput sequencing methods, I aim to provide valuable knowledge about how microbial diversity regulates nutrient cycling, allowing us to develop sustainable management strategies that maintain crop yields whilst guarding ecological integrity.

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