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Ryan Paerl

Asst Professor

Jordan Hall 4135



As a native North Carolinian, I excitedly joined the MEAS Department at NC State in 2017 to began a new marine & aquatic microbiology (bacteria and algae) research group.  I received my PhD in Ocean Sciences from UC Santa Cruz, and worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and University of Copenhagen prior to starting as an Assistant Professor at NC State.  Presently I teach two undergraduate/graduate courses: Aquatic Microbiology and Molecular Ecology of Aquatic Microbes.

Lab website:

Research Description

My research interests focus on improving our current understanding of marine/aquatic microbial ecology, physiology, metabolism, diversity, and biogeography. Problems and questions related to nutrient cycling (production, assimilation, and transformation) are of particular interest. Students in my lab will conduct in-field and/or laboratory-based experiments and employ traditional (cell isolation, culturing) as well as modern molecular techniques (qPCR, PCR, nucleic acid sequencing, isotopic tracing) to test hypotheses.


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PhD, Ocean Sciences, UC Santa Cruz (2011)
BS, Biology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2004)

Research Locations and Collaborations