Kate Clark
VP – Global Laboratory Services
Microbial Insights, Inc.
Knoxville, TN


Presentation Date: April 20, 2023

Through the identification and quantification of the microorganisms and functional genes related to petroleum hydrocarbon biodegradation and natural source zone depletion (NSZD), site and project managers are better able to: 1) assess the effectiveness of remedial treatments, 2) improve conceptual site models, and 3) provide direct microbial data to regulatory bodies as proof of potential biodegradation. By incorporating molecular biological tools (MBTs) into baseline sampling and performance monitoring, and by utilizing the Microbial Insights database for enhanced data analysis, the subsurface microbiome will no longer be an unknown. After brief introductions that include the strengths and limitations of each analysis, the presentation will focus on real-world applications. Case studies will be used to discuss the interpretation of MBT data and show how these results impacted site management and regulatory decisions.

BIO: Kate Clark, PhD
Kate directs the scientific and laboratory operations at MI, coordinating with lab directors, clients, international partners, and project managers to ensure that high-quality, accurate results are produced on time and our high customer service standards are upheld. With over a decade of experience and expertise in the analyses MI offers, she is uniquely suited to guide the lab in consistently delivering scientifically sound data and maintains the technical insight needed to interpret and apply the results. She received her B.S. in Biology from Rhodes College and went on to complete her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Tulsa. During her Ph.D. studies, Kate focused on the use of molecular biological tools (MBTs) including qPCR and stable isotope probing (SIP) to assess biodegradation of petroleum hydrocarbons and fuel oxygenates. She was also instrumental in the development and full scale, field validation of innovative in situ bioreactors for enhanced biodegradation of petroleum hydrocarbons and chlorinated solvents.

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