Alberto Robador Ausejo

Assistant Professor (Research) of Biological Sciences
Email Office AHF 143 Office Phone (213) 740-9479


  • Ph.D. Marine Biogeochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, 2009
  • M.S. Marine Biogeochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, 2005
  • B.Sc. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Navarra, 2003
    • Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Southern California, 2012-2018
    • Postdoctoral Research Associate, NASA Astrobiology Institute | University of Hawaii, 2009-2012
  • Summary Statement of Research Interests

    My research focuses on the relationship between the ecological energy flow (i.e. substrate supply rate) and the structure and activity of natural microbial communities, with special emphasis on the genetic repertoire, its expression and resulting biogeochemical activity. I have adapted the toolbox of nanocalorimetry to tackle this problem at the ecophysiological level, by studying how changes in metabolic heat convey information about the kinetics, as well as the thermodynamics of all microbially catalyzed biogeochemical reactions in energy-limited marine subsurface habitats. My current research efforts aim to leverage these findings using well-characterized model organisms to provide a deeper understanding of the physiochemical nature of the energy transformation and dissipation associated with microbial metabolic activity in conditions approaching those found in natural systems.

  • Journal Article

    • Robador, A., Amend, J. P., Finkel, S. E. (2019). Nanocalorimetry reveals growth dynamics of Escherichia coli cells undergoing adaptive evolution during long-term stationary phase. Appl. Environ. Microbiol.. Vol. 85 (15)
    • Robador, A., LaRowe, D. E., Finkel, S. E., Amend, J. P., Nealson, K. H. (2018). Changes in microbial energy metabolism measured by nanocalorimetry during growth phase transitions. Front. Microbiol.. Vol. 9 (109)
    • LaRowe, D. E., Koch, B. P., Robador, A., Witt, M., Ksionzek, K., Amend, J. P. (2017). Identification of organic compounds in ocean basement fluids. Org. Geochem.. Vol. 113 (Supplement C), pp. 124-127.
    • Robador, A., LaRowe, D. E., Jungbluth, S. P., Lin, H. T., Rappe, M. S., Nealson, K. H., Amend, J. P. (2016). Nanocalorimetric characterization of microbial activity in deep subsurface oceanic crustal fluids. Front. Microbiol.. Vol. 7
    • Robador, A., Muller, A. L., Sawicka, J. E., Berry, D., Hubert, C. R., Loy, A., Jorgensen, B. B., Bruchert, V. (2015). Activity and community structures of sulfate-reducing microorganisms in polar, temperate and tropical marine sediments. ISME J./International Society for Microbial Ecology. Vol. 10 (4), pp. 796–809.
    • Robador, A., Jungbluth, S. P., LaRowe, D. E., Bowers, R., Rappe, M., Amend, J. P., Cowen, J. P. (2015). Activity and phylogenetic diversity of sulfate-reducing microorganisms in low-temperature subsurface fluids within the upper oceanic crust. Front. Microbiol.. Vol. 5
    • Fisher, A. T., Tsuji, T., Petronotis, K., Wheat, C. G., Becker, K., Clark, J. F., Cowen, J. P., Edwards, K., Jannasch, H., Gautier, J. M., Haddad, A., Kane, J., Keske, S., Harris, M., Hulme, S., Ji, F., Masui, R., Miyamoto, H., Morvan, S., Mrozewski, S., Orcutt, B., Peart, L., Richardson, B., Rutter, J., Thiberge, B., Winslow, D., Cooper, S., Glazer, B., Robador, A., Brennon, R., Gross, A., Hamner, K., Hseih, C. C., Jungbluth, S. P., Lin, H. T., Ramirez, G., Ringlein, J., Slovacek, A., Strong, L. (2012). IODP expedition 327 and Atlantis expedition at 18-07 : Observatories and experiments on the eastern Flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. Sci. Drill.. Vol. 13, pp. 4-11.
    • Sawicka, J. E., Robador, A., Hubert, C., Jorgensen, B. B., Bruchert, V. (2010). Effects of freeze-thaw cycles on anaerobic microbial processes in an Arctic intertidal mud flat. ISME J.. Vol. 4 (4), pp. 585-594.
    • Robador, A., Bruchert, V., Steen, A. D., Arnosti, C. (2010). Temperature induced decoupling of enzymatic hydrolysis and carbon remineralization in long-term incubations of Arctic and temperate sediments. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta. Vol. 74 (8), pp. 2316-2326.
    • Robador, A., Brüchert, V., Jørgensen, B. B. (2009). The impact of temperature change on the activity and community composition of sulfate-reducing bacteria in arctic versus temperate marine sediments. Environ. Microbiol.. Vol. 11 (7), pp. 1692-703.
    • Lösekann, T., Robador, A., Niemann, H., Knittel, K., Boetius, A., Dubilier, N. (2008). Endosymbioses between bacteria and deep-sea siboglinid tubeworms from an Arctic Cold Seep (Haakon Mosby Mud Volcano, Barents Sea). Environ. Microbiol.. Vol. 10 (12), pp. 3237-3254.