venus flytrap


Dr. Mike Hyman - Professor



Microbial Physiology/ Bioremediation



Research Interests

The research in this laboratory focuses on the enzymology, pathways and physiology of microorganisms that degrade environmental contaminants. The organisms we study are primarily hydrocarbon-oxidizing strains that degrade compounds such as trichloroethylene (TCE), methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) and 1,4-dioxane (14D). The approaches used in this laboratory range from the isolation and characterization of novel strains through to genomic and proteomic analyses of individual strains and microbial communities. Many of these approaches make use of stable isotopes. Our goal is to understand the mechanisms utilized by naturally occurring microorganisms to degrade contaminants and to use this information to help develop appropriate treatment strategies that maximize the activities of these microorganisms in contaminated environments.


Selected Publications

Lan, R. S., Smith, C. A., and Hyman, M. R. (2013) Oxidation of cyclic ethers by alkane-grown Mycobacterium vaccae JOB5. Remediation 25: 23-42

Trippe, K, Wolpert, T., Hyman, M., and Ciuffetti, L. (2013) RNAi silencing of a cytochrome P450 monoxygenase disrupts the ability of a filamentous fungus, Graphium sp., to grow on short-chain gaseous alkanes and ethers. Biodegradation (DOI 10.1007/s10532-013-9646-1)

Hyman MR (2012) Biodegradation of gasoline ether oxygenates. Current Opinion in Biotechnology 24: 1-8

Hamilton, P. T., Luginbuhl, S. C. and Hyman, M. R. (2012) Preparing science-trained professionals for the biotechnology industry: A ten year perspective on a professional science master’s program. Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education 13:39-44

Aslett, D., Haas, J., and Hyman M. (2011) Identification of tertiary butyl alcohol (TBA)-utilizing organisms in BioGAC reactors using 13C-DNA stable isotope probing. Biodegradation 22: 961-972

Smith, C. A., and M. R. Hyman (2010). Oxidation of gasoline oxygenates by close homologues of Pseudomonas putida GPo1 alkane hydroxylase in Pseudomonas mendocina KR-1 and n-octane-utilizing Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains. Environmental Microbiology Reports 2: 426-432

House A. J., and M. R. Hyman (2010). Effects of gasoline components on MTBE and TBA cometabolism by Mycobacterium austroafricanum JOB5. Biodegradation 21: 525-541.

Skinner, K. M., L. M. Ciuffetti and M. R. Hyman (2009). Metabolism and cometabolism of cyclic ethers by a filamentous fungus, a Graphium sp. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 75: 5514-5522.

McKelvie, J. R., M. R. Hyman, M. Elsner. C. Smith D. M. Aslett, G. Lacrampe-Couloume and B. Sherwood Lollar. (2009) Isotopic fractionation of MTBE suggests different aerobic biodegradation mechanisms. Environmental Science and Technology 43: 2793-2799.