Home > MASE Associate Investigators

    MASE Associate Investigators are individual scientists (possibly representing a team/group) from Europe or beyond whose research activities and interest are relevant and potentially complementary to the MASE research plan. Associate Investigators collaborate with the MASE project, extending its scope by bringing in complementary activities, knowledge, and/or (in-kind) resources, in turn, MASE can make available its samples, protocols and knowledge produced. MASE Publications resulting from work with Associate Investigators or from work that benefited from their contribution will associate them to the list of authors.

    Currently seven scientists are associated with MASE:

    • Dr. Li Deng leads an Emmy Noether research group in the institute of Groundwater Ecology, Helmholtz Center in Munich (Germany) and as a collaborator of the MASE project she is involved in the MEXEM initiative to investigate viruses in anaerobic environments. Her work will make use of the samples collected in MASE. This in on-going work and will continue beyond the end of the MAES project. More info>>
    • Dr. Jennifer Eigenbrode is a research scientist at the NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and she has been working on analysing MASE samples using the SAM (Sample Analysis at Mars) instrument onboard the Curiosity rover. Specifically she has been analysing samples from the Boulby Mine collected during the MASE field campaigns and investigating whether biosignatures can be detected in the salt. The samples are used to validate and study the limits and capabilities of the instrument to detect life in anaerobic environments. More info>>

    • Dr. Jessica Flahaut is a CNES planetary geologist research fellow in the e-Mars team, at the Laboratoire de Geologie de Lyon, France. She performed mineralogical analysis of field samples using X-ray diffraction (XRD) techniques that identify and characterize compounds based on their diffraction pattern. These analysis have helped to place field samples into their geological context by way of bulk composition phase analysis and have been integral to the completion of fossilised experiments. More info>>

    • Prof. Uwe Meierhenrich is professor of Physical Chemistry and Analytical Chemistry at the University Nice Sophia Antipolis and he carried out analysis of amino acids and their chiral signatures using MASE samples. The purpose of this is to study the amino acid content of extreme environments and whether they can be used as a biosignature. This is ongoing work and the samples will be used beyond the end of the MASE project. More info>>

    • Dr. Tetyana Milojevic is Vice-Head of the Department of Biophysical Chemistry at the University of Vienna (Austria) and she has carried out proteomics studies in collaboration with University of Edinburgh on isolates in salt solutions, investigating the proteins that are produced in response to salt and ionizing radiation stress. As a collaborator of the MASE project she is involved in the MEXEM initiative. She has also been involved in preliminary studies to investigate how anaerobic organisms respond to oxygen to anoxic transitions. This work is on-going.More info>> 

    • Dr. Rüdiger Pukall is a curator for microorganisms at the Leibniz Institute DSMZ – German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures in Braunschweig, Germany and he oversaw taking MASE samples and curating them at the DSMZ, coordinating any analysis and basic physiological and biochemical characterisation that is necessary for the isolates to be made available to the wider scientific community through the culture collection. He has been co-author of a number of papers for MASE. His work has been essential in linking the isolation work to the provision of the isolates to the wider scientific community.. More info>>

    • Dr. Andreas Riedo is a SNSF (Swiss National Science Foundation) fellow at the Sackler Laboratory for Astrophysics, Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, The Netherlands. Since 2009 he is involved in the field of space research and the development of space instrumentation. His expertise covers various fields of disciplines, including the design and development of space instrumentation, laser ablation and laser ablation ionization mass spectrometry (LIMS), mass spectrometry, among others. Currently, he is focusing on the development of the fundamentals for the detection of biosignatures using a miniature LIMS system originally designed for the in situ investigation of the chemical composition (elements/isotopes) of solids on planetary surfaces. Within MASE, he has conducted complementary measurements on permafrost samples from the Yedoma region, Russia, using a miniature prototype laser ablation ionization mass spectrometry (LIMS) system designed for in situ analysis of the chemical composition of solids on planetary surfaces. More info>>
    • Prof. Thorsten Stoeck is Professor at the University of Kaiserslautern and head of the research group “Ecology” in the Department of Biology. The main focus of his research is the diversity, function and ecology of microbial communities (eukaryotes and prokaryotes) in aquatic environments in the context of climate change and ecosystem function(ing), environmental monitoring and ecosystem services, extreme environments, and industrial applications. As a collaborator of the MASE project she is involved in the MEXEM initiative. More info>>





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