Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Marine Microbial Ecology

The Peng Lab in Marine Microbial Ecology at the University of South Carolina is seeking a motivated individual to work on a project investigating nitrous oxide production by salt marsh sediment fungi. This project will combine molecular and microbiological methods with rate measurements using stable isotope tracers. Additionally, this project will contribute to the understanding of how microbial eukaryotes such as fungi survive and even thrive in the absence of oxygen.

Nitrous oxide is a leading greenhouse gas and ozone-depleting substance, thus constraining its atmospheric sources and sinks is of high societal relevance. Coastal wetlands are one of the largest natural sources of nitrous oxide to the atmosphere, with most of the flux attributed to microbial nitrification and denitrification. In other environments, such as soils, fungi are significant contributors to nitrous oxide production. Yet, the fungal contribution to nitrous oxide production in coastal wetlands and the environmental conditions that regulate fungal nitrous oxide production are still poorly constrained. Better understanding of the contribution and mechanism of marine fungi to nitrous oxide production is critical for future climate predictions since they could strongly exacerbate nitrous oxide production and global warming. The new knowledge generated about the environmental conditions that will stimulate/inhibit fungal nitrous oxide production can guide the restoration and management of salt marsh habitats.

Interested individuals should send a CV and cover letter to Xuefeng (Nick) Peng at

Application deadline:
Start date: ASAP
Location: Columbia, SC, USA