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Associate Professor Earth and Atmospheric Sciences 402-472-2739 227 Bessey

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Environmental microorganisms are recognized to enzymatically mediate biogeochemical cycles in marine and terrestrial aquatic and soil/sedimentary enviroments, thereby shaping our environment. The fate and transport of inorganic and organic natural and contaminant compounds can be directly or indirectly regulated by microbial metabolism(s). My research interests focus on the intricate interactions between microorganisms (including viruses) and the environment at the molecular scale, the ecosystem scale, and ultimately, the global scale. I have applied and will continue using an interdisciplinary approach in order to link the microbial community to biogeochemical function combining environmental microbiology, microbial physiology, molecular biology, microbial ecology, geomicrobiology, virology, and biogeochemistry.

Current Projects:

Microbially-Catalyzed Mineral Dissolution and Precipitation: Implications to Heavy Metal and Radionuclide Mobility

Geo-virology: Microbially-Mediated Nitrate and Metal Reduction Influenced by Bacteriophage Infection

Microbially-Mediated Coupled Biogeochemical Reactions: Nitrification and Nirate-dependent Metal Oxidation

Role of Metals in the Nitrogen Cycle


Selected Publications

  • Pollock, J., K. A. Weber, J. Lack, L. A. Achenbach, M. Mormile, and J. D. Coates, 2007, Alkaline iron (III) reduction by a novel alkaliphilic, halotolerant, Bacillus sp. isolated from salt flat sediments of Soap Lake, Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol, 77, 927-934.
  • Thrash, J.C., J.I. Van Trump, K.A. Weber, E. Miller, L.A. Achenbach. J.D. Coates, 2007, Electrochemical stimulation of microbial perchlorate reduction, Environ. Sci. Technol, 41, 1740-1746.
  • Weber, K.A. and J.D. Coates, 2007, Microbially-Mediated Anaerobic Iron (II) Oxidation at Circumneutral pH, in Manual of Environmental Microbiology (edited by C.J. Hurst, R.L. Crawford, J.L. Garland, D.A. Lipson, A.L. Mills, L.D. Stetzenbach (eds.)), AMS Press, Section 94.
  • Weber, K.A., J.L. Pollock, K.A. Cole, L.A. Achenbach, J.D. Coates, 2006, Nitrate-Dependent Fe(II) Oxidation by a Novel, Lithoautotrophic, Betaproteobacterium, Strain 2002, Appl. Environ. Microbiol., 72(1), 686-694.
  • Weber, K.A., L. Achenbach, and J.D. Coates, 2006, Microbes Pumping Iron: Anaerobic Microbial Iron Oxidation and Reduction, Nat. Rev. Microbiol., 4, 752-764.
  • Weber, K.A., M.M. urrutia, P.F. Churchill, R.K. Kukkadapu, and E.E. Roden, 2006, Anaerobic Redox Cycling of Iron by Freshwater Sediment Microorganisms., Environ. Microbiol., 8(1), 100-113.
  • Weber, K.A., F.W. Picardal, E.E. Roden, 2001, Microbially Catalyzed Nitrate-Dependent Oxidation of Biogenic Solid-Phase Fe(II) Compounds, Environ. Sci. Technol., 35(8), 1644-1650.
  • Wrighton, K.C., P. Agbo, F. Warnecke, K.A. Weber, E.L. Brodie, T.Z. DeSantis, P. Hugenholtz, G.L. Andersen, J.D. Coates, A Novel Ecological Role of the Firmicutes Identified in Thermophilic Fuel Cells, ISME J., in press.