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Freedman, Zachary

Assistant Professor of Environmental Microbiology
Program Coordinator for Environmental Microbiology

Zachary Freedman received a B.S. in Biology from Fairfield University in 2005 and a Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolution from Rutgers University in 2012. From 2012-2016, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow under the supervision of Dr. Donald Zak in the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Michigan. Dr. Freedman joined the faculty at West Virginia University in July 2016 as an Assistant Professor of Environmental Microbiology in the Division of Plant and Soil Sciences. The Freedman Lab conducts research to unravel the biological, chemical, and physical mechanisms that govern the composition of microbial communities as well as their ecosystem function. They primarily study the impact of environmental change on microorganisms that are associated with the cycling and storage of elements that are critical to life on Earth (including carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorous). The lab employs classical field- and lab-based methods, as well as state-of-the-art DNA sequencing and computational bioinformatics. 

Select Publications

  1. Landesman, B., Freedman, Z. B., and D. Nelson. (2019) Seasonal, sub-seasonal and diurnal variation of soil bacterial community composition in a temperate deciduous forest. FEMS Microbiology Ecology. 95(2), fiz002.
  2. Kellner, E., J. Hubbart, K. Stephan, E. M. Morrissey, Z. B. Freedman, E. Kutta, and C. Kelly. (2018) Characterization of sub-watershed-scale stream chemistry regimes in an Appalachian mixed-landuse watershed. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 190(10), 586.
  3. Entwistle, E. M., K. J. Romanowicz, W. A. Argiroff, Z. B. Freedman, J. J. Morris, and D. R. Zak. (2018) Anthropogenic N deposition alters the composition of expressed class II fungal peroxidases. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 84(9). e02816-17.
  4. Cline, L. C., D. R. Zak, R. A. Upchurch, Z. B. Freedman, and A. R. Peschel. (2017) Soil microbial communities and elk migratory behavior: implications for soil biogeochemical cycling in the sagebrush steppe. Ecology Letters. 20(2): 202-211.
  5. Zak, D. R., Z. B. Freedman, R. A. Upchurch, M. Steffens, and I. Kögel-Knabner. (2017) Anthropogenic N deposition increases soil organic matter accumulation without altering its biochemical composition. Global Change Biology. 23(2): 933-944.
  6. Freedman, Z. B., R. A. Upchurch, and D. R. Zak. (2016) Microbial potential for ecosystem N loss is

    increased by experimental N deposition. PLoS ONE. 11(10), e0164531.

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