Laura G. Leff
- Ph.D, University of Georgia
- Career Pathways
- Life on Planet Earth
My research focuses on microbial ecology of aquatic ecosystems with emphasis on bacterial ecology of streams. Present projects in my laboratory include: Our lab focuses on examining responses of microorganisms to their environment. Examples of recent projects in the lab include:
Connecting microbial community structure and function
Microbial communities of acid mine impacted streams and changes in the community associated with remediation
Effects of dissolved organic matter on denitrification in agricultural streams
Leaf decomposition in wetlands, streams and terrestrial systems
Response of bacteria to nutrients and carbon
In each project, we use a variety of molecular biology techniques and microscopy to examine properties such as bacterial and fungal community structure, gene expression, diversity of denitrification genes, etc. We seek to integrate the fields of microbiology and ecology.
Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities
Current and past funding from NSF, NASA, EPA, and other agencies/foundations
Editor, Applied and Environmental Microbiology (2001-2011)
Editorial Boards, Applied and Environmental Microbiology (1997-1999, 1999-2001), Microbial Ecology (2001-present), The International Society of Microbial Ecology Journal (2006-present)
PI on NSF IGERT grant, IGERT website
recent publications include:
- Ghosh, S. M. Moitra, C. Woolverton and L. G. Leff. Effects of remediation on the bacterial community of an acid mine drainage impacted stream. Canadian Journal of Microbiology, accepted
- Baxter, A., Johnston L, Royer, TV, and L. G. Leff. 2012. Spatial differences in denitrification and bacterial community structure of streams: relationships with environmental conditions. Aquatic Sciences. (DOI) 10.1007/s00027-012-0272-5
- Johnson, L. T. Royer, J. Edgerton and L. G. Leff. 2012. Manipulation of the dissolved organic carbon pool in an agricultural stream: responses in microbial community structure, denitrification, and assimilatory nitrogen uptake. Ecosystems, 15: 1027-1038.
- Kennedy, E., L. G. Leff and F. deSzalay. 2012 Effects of herbiciding on Phragmites australis decomposition. Fundamental and Applied Limnology, 180:309-319.
- Vukanti, R. and L. G. Leff. 2012. Expression of multiple stress response genes by Escherichia coli under modeled reduced gravity. Microgravity Science and Technology, 24: 267-279, DOI: 10.1007/s12217-012-9310-0
- Baxter, A, Johnston L, Edgerton J, Royer TV, and L. G. Leff. 2012. Structure and function of denitrifying bacterial assemblages in low order Indiana streams. Freshwater Science, 31:304-317.
- Vukanti, R, M. Model, and L. G. Leff. 2012. Effect of modeled reduced gravity conditions on bacterial morphology and physiology. BMC Microbiology 12:4 doi:10.1186/1471-2180-12-4
- Antibus, D., L. G. Leff, B. L. Hall, J. Baseman, and C. Blackwood. 2012. Cultivable Bacteria from Ancient Algal Mats from the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica. Extremophiles, 16:105-114.
- Leff, L.G. Freshwater Habitats, 2012. In: Topics in Ecological and Environmental Microbiology, Tom Schmidt and Moselio Schaechter (editors), updated version of chapter from 2009 Encyclopedia of Microbiology. Elsevier.
- Antibus, D., L. G. Leff, B. L. Hall, J. Baseman, and C. Blackwood. 2012. Molecular Characterization of Ancient Algal Mats from the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica, Antarctic Science 24: 139-146.
- Das, M, T. V. Royer, and L. G. Leff. 2011. Interactions between aquatic bacteria and an aquatic hyphomycete on decomposing maple leaves. Fungal Ecology, 5:236-244
- Lababidi S. L., M. Pelts, M.Moitra, L. G. Leff, M. A. Model 2011. Measurement of bacterial volume by transmission-through-dye imaging. Journal of Microbiological Methods, 87:375-377.
- Lan Wu, L. M. Feinstein, O. Valverde-Barrantes, M. W. Kershner, L. G. Leff, and C. B. Blackwood. 2011. Placing the effects of leaf litter diversity on saprotrophic microorganisms in the context of leaf type and habitat, Microbial Ecology, 61:399-409.
- aquatic ecology
- microbial ecology
- American Society for Microbiology
- International Society for Microbial Ecology
- Ecological Society of America
- Society for Freshwater Science