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Prof David Pearce


Department: Applied Sciences

The underlying theme of my research is to use microbiology (and in particular novel molecular techniques applied to microbial ecology, microbial biodiversity and activity, environmental genomics, biogeochemical cycling and model extremophiles) to understand Polar ecosystem function and the potential for shifts in biogeochemical activity that may result from environmental change. I have taken the lead in the development of new frontiers of research in metagenomics, chemosynthetic communities, sediment sequestration of carbon and subglacial lake environments and have initiated new interdisciplinary approaches on the aerial environment (with chemists), ice nucleation activity (with physicists) and in the biogeochemistry of ice (with glaciologists).

Further Information

Key Publications

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Polar soils exhibit distinct patterns in microbial diversity and dominant phylotypes, Ji, M., Kong, W., Jia, H., Delgado-Baquerizo, M., Zhou, T., Liu, X., Ferrari, B., Malard, L., Liang, C., Xue, K., Makhalanyane, T., Zhu, Y., Wang, Y., Pearce, D., Cowan, D. 11 Jan 2022, In: Soil Biology and Biochemistry
  • Bacteria in the lakes of the Tibetan Plateau and polar regions, Liu, K., Yao, T., Pearce, D., Jiao, N., Zeng, Y., Guo, B., Liu, Y. 1 Feb 2021, In: Science of the Total Environment
  • Bacterial diversity in house dust: characterization of a core indoor microbiome, Entwistle, J., Thompson, J., Argyraki, A., Bashton, M., Bramwell, L., Crown, M., Hursthouse, A., Jabeen, K., Marinho-Reis, A., Namdeo, A., Nelson, A., Pearce, D., Potgieter-Vermaak, S., Rasmussen, P., Wragg, J. 23 Nov 2021, In: Frontiers in Environmental Science
  • Influence of Spatial Scale on Structure of Soil Bacterial Communities across an Arctic Landscape, Malard, L., Anwar, M., Jacobsen, C., Pearce, D. 1 Mar 2021, In: Applied and Environmental Microbiology
  • Marked Seasonal Changes in the Microbial Production, Community Composition and Biogeochemistry of Glacial Snowpack Ecosystems in the Maritime Antarctic, Hodson, A., Sabacka, M., Dayal, A., Edwards, A., Cook, J., Convey, P., Redeker, K., Pearce, D. 15 Jul 2021, In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences
  • Antarctic ecosystems in transition – life between stresses and opportunities, Gutt, J., Isla, E., Xavier, J., Adams, B., Ahn, I., Cheng, C., Colesie, C., Cummings, V., di Prisco, G., Griffiths, H., Hawes, I., Hogg, I., McIntyre, T., Meiners, K., Pearce, D., Peck, L., Piepenburg, D., Reisinger, R., Saba, G., Schloss, I., Signori, C., Smith, C., Vacchi, M., Verde, C., Wall, D. 22 Dec 2020, In: Biological Reviews
  • Effects of freeze-thaw cycles on High Arctic soil bacterial communities, Lim, C., Pearce, D., Convey, P., Lee, L., Chan, K., Tan, G. 1 Mar 2020, In: Polar Science
  • Functional associations and resilience in microbial communities, Avila-Jimenez, M., Burns, G., He, Z., Zhou, J., Hodson, A., Avila-Jimenez, J., Pearce, D. 24 Jun 2020, In: Microorganisms
  • Biogeographical patterns in soil bacterial communities across the Arctic region, Malard, L., Anwar, M., Jacobsen, C., Pearce, D. 1 Sep 2019, In: FEMS Microbiology Ecology
  • Biological Contamination Prevention for Outer Solar System Moons of Astrobiological Interest: What Do We Need to Know?, Rettberg, P., Antunes, A., Brucato, J., Cabezas, P., Collins, G., Haddaji, A., Kminek, G., Leuko, S., Mckenna-lawlor, S., Moissl-eichinger, C., Fellous, J., Olsson-francis, K., Pearce, D., Rabbow, E., Royle, S., Saunders, M., Sephton, M., Spry, A., Walter, N., Wimmer Schweingruber, R., Treuet, J. 1 Aug 2019, In: Astrobiology

PGR Supervision

  • Carmel Abbott Colonisation strategies of bacteria in extreme environments and health implications in the human exploration of space. Start Date: 01/03/2019
  • Lucie Malard Microbial biogeography and colonization in Arctic terrestrial ecosystems Start Date: 01/10/2016 End Date: 02/12/2019
  • Lewis Cuthbertson Molecular microbial ecology of Polar aerial environments Start Date: 01/10/2015 End Date: 21/09/2020
  • Luke Cockerton The role of microorganisms in cloud formation (through biogenic ice nucleation) and its influence on albedo and climate in the Arctic Start Date: 01/03/2020
  • Rosalia Calvo Ryan THE SEARCH FOR LIFE ON ICY MOONS Start Date: 01/03/2020
  • Carmel Abbott Colonisation strategies of bacteria in extreme environments and health implications in the human exploration of space. Start Date: 01/03/2019 End Date: 21/10/2021
  • Ravind Bhangal Start Date: 01/10/2018 End Date: 10/12/2019
  • IAIN DICKINSON Molecular microbial ecology of Polar environments – Mining the marine microbial metagenome Start Date: 01/10/2013


  • Microbiology PhD June 03 2013
  • Fellow (FHEA) Higher Education Academy (HEA) 2015

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