Dr. Duane P. Moser

Associate Research Professor Microbiology

Professional Interests

Dr. Moser is a microbial and molecular ecologist focused on life in the terrestrial deep subsurface, lakes and oceans, and arid lands. Moser utilizes a combination of cultivation-dependent and -independent life detection methods, in conjunction with environmental and stable isotope chemistry, to track the activities and identities of microbes in the wild. Moser has focused on a variety of microbial types throughout his career, especially uncultivated bacteria and archaea of sediments and very deep aquifers. Moser has also worked extensively with bacteria of the cosmopolitan aquatic genus, Shewanella.

Research Summary

At DRI, Dr. Moser is developing a research program addressing the many microbiologically interesting habitats of the Great Basin, with special emphasis on aquifer and geothermal systems, terminal lakes and playas, and deep lake sediments. He is also developing studies addressing the role of microbes in contaminant alteration and transport; especially radionuclides at DOE sites, such as the Nevada Test Site. He is also researching the role of riverbed and riparian zone microbes in the enhancement of water quality of western rivers, such as the Truckee in NV.

Research Projects

Research Programs

Media Coverage


Ph.D. 1997 University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee Biological Sciences
M.S. 1992 University of Wisconsin, OshKosh Microbiology
B.S. 1989 University of Wisconsin, OshKosh Microbiology
Major 1985 University of Wisconsin, Platteville Reclamation/Geology

Academic Affiliations


Environmental Microbiology Laboratory

 The Environmental Microbiology Laboratory, located in Las Vegas, Nevada, is a versatile platform supporting the study of microorganisms in the environment. The major tools of this facility are designed to be implemented as modules applicable to almost any sample type, with a current emphasis on deep aquifers and the continental subsurface, freshwater lake sediment, and desert springs.

Research and employment opportunities at all levels (undergraduate - postdoctoral) are often available in our lab. Several types of scholarships may also be available throughout the year for students with strong academic credentials.

Fellowship Winners

  • Karen Levy
    • Award: NSF EPSCoR Undergraduate Fellowship (2006/2007 academic year)
  • Juan Plata
    • Award: NSF EPSCoR Undergraduate Fellowship (2006/2007 academic year)
    • Award: UNLV Ronald E. McNair Scholarship (summer 2007)
  • Christina Jacovides
    • Award: NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates (summer 2007)
  • Mary Ehrsam
    • Award: NSF EPSCoR Undergraduate Fellowship (2007/2008 academic year)
  • Alexander Michaud
    • Award: NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates (summer 2008)

Online Publications

Online Press Releases
Online Journal Publications

Publications & Presentations


Jangir, Y., French, S., Momper, L., Moser, D. P., Amend, J. P., El-Naggar, M. Y. (2016). Isolation and Characterization of Electrochemically Active Subsurface Delftia and Azonexus Species, Frontiers in Microbiology, doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.00756


Navarro, J. B., Moser, D. P., Flores, A., Ross, C., Rosen, M. R., Dong, H., Zhang, G., Hedlund, B. P. (2009). Bacterial succession within an ephemeral hypereutrophic Mojave Desert playa lake, Microb Ecol, 57, 307-320


Arrowood, T. J., Young, M. H., Yu, Z., Labahn, S. K., Moser, D. P. (2007). Fate and Transport of Acrylamide in Soil and Groundwater Systems: Sorption, Retardation and Numerical Simulations
Labahn, S. K., Moser, D. P., Arrowood, T., Young, M. H. (2007). Fate of Acrylamide in Soil and Groundwater Systems: Microbial Degradation
Young, M. H., Woodrow, J., Moser, D. P., Zhu, J., Chen, L., Susfalk, R. B., Miller, G. C., Labahn, S. K., Moran, E. A., Arrowood, T. (2007). Results of Laboratory Experiments in Support of PAM-Related Research (with nine authors)


Gihring, T. M., Moser, D. P., Lin, L. H., Davidson, M., Onstott, T. C., Morgan, L., Milleson, M., Kieft, T. L., Trimarco, E., Balkwill, D. L., Dollhopf, M. E. (2006). The distribution of microbial taxa in the subsurface water of the Kalahari Shield, South Africa, Geomicrobiol. J., 23, 415-430
Kieft, T. L., Moser, D. P. (2006). Preface for Special Issue (Deep Biosphere), Geomicrobiol, J., 23
Lin, L. H., Wang, P. L., Rumble, D., Lippmann-Pipke, J., Boice, E., Pratt, L. M., Lollar, B. S., Brodie, E. L., Hazen, T. C., Andersen, G. L., DeSantis, T. Z., Moser, D. P., Kershaw, D., Onstott, T. C. (2006). Long-term sustainability of a high-energy, low-diversity crustal biome, Science, 314, 479-482
Onstott, T. C., Lin, L. H., Davidson, M., Mislowack, B., Borcsik, M., Hall, J. A., Slater, G. F., Ward, J. A., Lollar, B. S., Lippmann-Pipke, J., Boice, E., Pratt, L. M., Pfiffner, S. M., Moser, D. P., Gihring, T. M., Kieft, T. L., Phelps, T. J., Vanheerden, E., Litthaur, D., DeFlaun, M., Rothmel, R., Wanger, G., Southam, G. (2006). The origin and age of biogeochemical trends in deep fracture water of the Witwatersrand Basin, South Africa, Geomicrobiol. J, 23, 369-414
Pfiffner, S. M., Cantu, J. M., Smithgall, A., Peacock, A. D., White, D. C., Moser, D. P., Onstott, T. C., van Heerden, E. (2006). Deep subsurface microbial biomass and community structure in Witwatersrand Basin mines, Geomicrobiol. J, 23, 431-442
Sherwood Lollar, B., Lacrampe-Couloume, G., Slater, G. F., Ward, J. A., Moser, D. P., Gihring, T. M., Lin, L., Onstott, T. C. (2006). Unravelling abiogenic and biogenic sources of methane in the Earth's deep subsurface, Chem. Geol., 226, 328-339
Slater, G. F., Lippmann-Pipke, J., Moser, D. P., Reddy, C. M., Onstott, T. C., Lacrampe-Couloume, G., Lollar, B. S. (2006). C-14 in methane and DIC in the deep terrestrial subsurface: Implications for microbial methanogenesis, Geomicrobiol J, 23, 453-462


Lin, L. H., Hall, J. A., Lippmann, J., Ward, J. A., Sherwood Lollar, B., DeFlaun, M., Rothmel, R., Moser, D. P., Gihring, T. M., Mislowack, B., Onstott, T. C. (2005). Radiolytic H2 in the continental crust: nuclear power for deep subsurface microbial communities, Geochem, Geophys, Geosys, 6:Q07003, doi: 10.1029/2004GC000907
Moser, D. P., Gihring, T. M., Brockman, F. J., Fredrickson, J. K., Balkwill, D. L., Dollhopf, M. E., Sherwood Lollar, B., Pratt, L. M., Boice, E., Southam, G., Wanger, G., Baker, B. J., Pfiffner, S. M., Lin, L. H., Onstott, T. C. (2005). Desulfotomaculum spp. and Methanobacterium spp. Dominate 4-5 km Deep Fault, Appl. Environ. Microbiol, 12, 8773-8783


Ward, J. A., Slater, G. F., Moser, D. P., Lindenschmidt, L. H., LacrampeCouloume, G., Bonin, A. S., Davidson, M., Hall, J. A., Mislowack, B., Bellamy, R. E., Onstott, T. C., Lollar, B. S. (2004). Microbial hydrocarbon gases in the Witwatersrand Basin, South Africa: Implications for the deep biosphere, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 68, 3239-3250