Dana E. Hunt

Dana E. Hunt

Assistant Professor of Microbial Ecology

My research focus is on understanding the ecology of microbes through examination of their genes and lifestyles. Bacteria are the most diverse organisms on earth and play a pivotal role in planetary cycling of nutrients and energy. Yet, we have a poor understanding of the factors that drive their diversity and dynamics in the environment. The lab's emphasis is on studying bacterial interactions with the environment at the appropriate temporal and spatial scale including the effect of temperature changes on bacterial populations and bacterial interactions with other organisms. Another area of active research is the response and adaptation of bacteria to emerging pollutants such as antibiotics and nanoparticles.

In The News


McMurray, SE, Johnson, ZI, Hunt, DE, Pawlik, JR, and Finelli, CM. "Selective feeding by the giant barrel sponge enhances foraging efficiency." Limnology and Oceanography 61, no. 4 (July 2016): 1271-1286.
Yung, C-M, Ward, CS, Davis, KM, Johnson, ZI, and Hunt, DE. "Insensitivity of Diverse and Temporally Variable Particle-Associated Microbial Communities to Bulk Seawater Environmental Parameters." Applied and environmental microbiology 82, no. 11 (June 2016): 3431-3437.
Yung, C-M, Vereen, MK, Herbert, A, Davis, KM, Yang, J, Kantorowska, A, Ward, CS, Wernegreen, JJ, Johnson, ZI, and Hunt, DE. "Thermally adaptive tradeoffs in closely related marine bacterial strains." Environmental microbiology 17, no. 7 (July 2015): 2421-2429.
Hunt, DE, and Ward, CS. "A network-based approach to disturbance transmission through microbial interactions." Frontiers in microbiology 6 (January 2015): 1182-. (Review)
Chae, S-R, Hunt, DE, Ikuma, K, Yang, S, Cho, J, Gunsch, CK, Liu, J, and Wiesner, MR. "Aging of fullerene C₆₀ nanoparticle suspensions in the presence of microbes." Water research 65 (November 2014): 282-289.


ENVIRON 383LA: Marine Molecular Microbiology (ENVIRON 383LA: Marine Molecular Microbiology)
BIOLOGY 293A: Research Independent Study (BIOLOGY 293A: Research Independent Study)
ENVIRON 593: Independent Studies and Projects (ENVIRON 593: Independent Studies and Projects)
ENVIRON 825LA: Marine Molecular Microbiology (ENVIRON 825LA: Marine Molecular Microbiology)
EOS 393A: Research Independent Study (EOS 393A: Research Independent Study)

Contact Information

135 Duke Marine Lab Rd
Beaufort, NC 28516
135 Duke Marine Lab Rd
Beaufort, NC 28516


Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2008)