U.S. Department of Energy

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Microbiome Science

Human gut microbiome.

Deploy omics and synthetic biology to understand and manipulate the functional architecture of communal microorganisms in service of bioengineered solutions

Communal microorganisms inhabit the Earth and the human body in astonishing numbers. Bacteria are 100 million times more numerous than the stars in the universe and represent a billion species. 

These interactive organisms perform often little understood services that profoundly shape the Earth and influence human health.

Our Microbiome Science team uses omics and synthetic biology to investigate the functional architecture of communal organisms. Their work opens avenues for bioengineered advances in drug discovery, personalized medicine, and renewable fuels. It also increases our knowledge of chemical-microbiome interactions and the ecosystem-scale role of microbial communities. 

Our researchers focus on where microbiomes play a role in key biosystems; on ecosystem function and sustainability; on chemical and other environmental exposures; on the interplay of proteins, lipids, and metabolites within microbiomes; and on predictive behaviors on both human and ecological scales. 


Janet Jansson is Chief Scientist for Biology in the Biological Sciences Division and a laboratory fellow at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Currently Dr. Jansson is the lead for the Microbiome in Transition initiative and the...
Dr. Brian Thrall is Associate Director within the Biological Sciences Division, Chief Scientist for Systems Toxicology, and Technical Group Manager for Health Impacts & Exposure Science at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Dr. Thrall also...
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