Zoe G. Cardon

MBL Greenhouse Research Facility

Senior Scientist

Tel: 508-289-7473 | Fax: 508-457-1548
E-mail: zcardon@mbl.edu

Ph.D., Stanford University, 1994
B.S., Biology; B.A., Spanish, Utah State University, 1988

Full CV

Micro-Eco Discussion Group Schedule

Research Statement

I am an ecosystems ecologist with roots in mechanistic plant physiology. For two decades, I have striven to understand controls over dynamic interactions among plants, microbes, and soils, particularly in the fundamental terrestrial commodities exchange -- the rhizosphere. In the rhizosphere, organic carbon (from plants) fuels recycling of mineral nutrients (by microbes), maintaining the productivity on which ecosystems and humanity depend. My work combines organismal, hydrologic, soil physical, and ecosystems perspectives and aims to identify commonalities across systems in how organism-initiated flow (of water) and physical (soil) structure constrain, and promote, resource exchange. Such commonalities should extend to any system where interacting macro- and microorganisms (microbiomes) are embedded in, evolving in, and creating or shaping their complex physical environment. I also have particular interest in desiccation tolerance and photoprotective mechanisms among desert-dwelling, unicellular green algae, as a window into adaptations enabling the leap of diverse green plants from aquatic habitats to land. My work is interdisciplinary and collaborative, combining development of genetically engineered microbiosensors, chlorophyll fluorescence and gas exchange, in situ imaging,”omics” approaches and new stable isotope techniques, with organismal- and ecosystems-scale modeling.

Recent publications
Larger implications of microbiomes research: 

Blaser MJ, Cardon ZG, Cho MK, Dangl JL, Donohue TJ, Green JL, Knight R, Maxon ME, Northen TR, Pollard KS, Brodie EL. (2016) Towards a predictive understanding of Earth's microbiomes to address 21st Century challenges. mBio. 7:e00714-16. doi: 10.1128/mBio.00714-16

Biteen JS, Blainey PC, Cardon ZG, Chun M, Church G, Dorrestein PC, Fraser SE, Gilbert J, Jansson JK, Knight R, Miller JF, Ozcan A, Prather KA, Taha S, Ven den Engh G,  Quake S, Ruby EG, Silver P, Weiss PS, Wong GCL, Wright AT, Xie XS, Young TD (2016) Tools for the Microbiome: Nano and Beyond. ACS Nano, 10:6-37. DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.5b07826. (Most read ACS Nano paper of 2016.)

Alivisatos AP et al. (2015) A unified initiative to harness Earth’s microbiomes. Science 350:507-508. (45 authors in Unified Microbiome Initiative Consortium.)

Rhizosphere processes and plant-microbe-soil interactions:

Fu C, Wang G, Bible K, Goulden ML, Saleska SR, Scott RL, Cardon ZG. Hydraulic redistribution affects carbon cycling via soil microbial activity and suppressed fire. Submitted.

Espeleta JF, Cardon ZG, Mayer KU, Neumann RB. (2016) Diel plant water use and competitive soil cation exchange interact to enhance NH₄+ and K+ availability in the rhizosphere.  Plant and Soil. 414:33.  doi: 10.1007/s11104-016-3089-5

Graves CJ, Makrides E, Schmidt V, Giblin A, Cardon ZG, Rand D. (2016) Functional responses of salt marsh microbial communities to long-term nutrient enrichment. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 82:2862-2871.

Fu C, Wang G, Goulden ML, Scott RL, Bible K, and Cardon ZG. (2016) Modeling the hydrological impact of hydraulic redistribution using CLM4.5 at eight AmeriFlux Sites. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 20:2001-2018. doi:10.5194/hess-20-2001-2016

Thomas F, Giblin AE, Cardon ZG, Sievert SM. (2014) Rhizosphere heterogeneity shapes abundance and activity of sulfur-oxidizing bacteria in vegetated salt marsh sediments. Frontiers in Microbiology 5:309 doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2014.00309.

Cardon ZG, Stark JM, Herron PM, Rasmussen JA. (2013) Sagebrush carrying out hydraulic lift enhances surface soil nitrogen cycling and nitrogen uptake into inflorescences. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 110(47):18988-18993.

Photosynthesis, photoprotection, and cell biology of green algae isolated from desert microbiotic crusts

Cardon ZG, Peredo EL, Dohnalkova AC, Gershone HL, Bezanilla M. A model suite of green algae within the Scenedesmaceae for investigating contrasting desiccation tolerance and morphology. In press.

Lunch, CK, LaFountain, AM, Thomas, S, Frank, HA, Lewis, LA, Cardon, ZG. (2013) The xanthophyll cycle and NPQ in diverse desert and aquatic green algae. Photosynthesis Research 115:139–151.

Cardon, Z.G., Gray, D.W., and Lewis, L. A. (2008) The green algal underground – evolutionary secrets of desert cells. Bioscience  58(2): 114-122.

Gray, D.W., Lewis, L.A., and Cardon, Z.G. (2007) Photosynthetic recovery following desiccation of desert green algae (Chlorophyta) and their aquatic relatives. Plant, Cell, and Environment, 30:1240-1255. (Journal cover image is from our work.)


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Mailing Address

The Ecosystems Center
7 MBL Street
Woods Hole, MA 02543-1015

Physical Address

CV Starr Environmental Laboratory
11 Albatross Street
Woods Hole, MA

Support Us

Support the Ecosystems Center with a gift to the MBL Annual Fund!