User:Robert M Jones

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Contact Info

Robert M Jones
  • Robert M Jones
  • The University of Arizona
  • 1177 East South Campus Drive
  • Tucson, Arizona
  • 602-206-7456

Currently I work in the Soil Water and Environmental Science Microbial Ecology Lab as a lab technician under Dr. Virginia Rich.


  • 2012, Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science, The University of Arizona

Research interests

In no particular order

  1. Soil Science
  2. Toxicology
  3. Environmental Remediation
  4. Research and Laboratory Techniques
  5. Microbial Ecology


I came to the University of Arizona in 2008 knowing pretty much immediately that I wanted to study environmental science. I have always been interested in environmental and natural sciences ever since I was little. I cannot say whether it was Captain Planet or my parents taking me to Yellowstone that did it but I was hooked and I knew that was where I wanted to study. I chose to do my focus in soil science because it seemed the most interesting to me and I had always had this desire to know how soil and plant interactions worked.

In 2010 I had my first real soils lab experience with the Natural Resources Conservation Service using visible near infrared spectroscopy to measure soil carbon. The project was part of a nation wide effort to better understand the capabilities of soil carbon sequestration.

In June of 2012 Dr. Virginia rich graciously accepted me into her lab to assist with protein, DNA, and RNA extractions from permafrost soils from subarctic Sweden. While it was only meant to be a summer research project I was fortunate enough to stay on as the lead lab technician. Since then I have worked along side Dr. Eun-Hae Kim in perfecting extraction methods for proteins in complicated soil matrices. I have also dabbled in numerous microbiology techniques such as PCR, in-gel protein digestion, and bioinformatics. Currently I am working on the informatics side of methods optimization by analyzing the results from our various protein extractions and comparing the different search algorithms in order to find the most optimal.

In August of 2012 I was granted entrance to the NASA Space Grant Internship program where I worked with Dr. Eric Betterton on his characterization of wind blown dust from mine tailings project. I specifically used GC/MS to analyze, characterize, and predict the organic contaminants from aerosols.




Poster: RM Jones*, E-H Kim*, BJ Woodcroft, M Shah, G Tyson, N Verberkmoes, VI Rich. “Optimizing Metaproteomic Methods to Capture Natural Microbial Community Expression”. Presented at the American Society of Microbiology Meeting, Denver, Colorado, May 2013

Poster: Eun-Hae “EK” Kim, Ben J. Woodcroft, Rhiannon Mondav, Carmody K. McCalley, Robert M. Jones, et al. “Microbial Mediators of carbon fate in thawing permafrost: Connecting microbial activity to geochemistry across an in situ thaw gradient”. Presented at the American Society of Microbiology Meeting, Denver, Colorado, May 2013

Presentation: RM Jones*, KP Rine, MR Russel, EA Betterton. “Methods Optimization for the Extraction of Organic Dust Contaminants”. Presented at the Annual NASA Space Grant Symposium, Phoenix, Arizona, April 2013

Poster: Eun-Hae “EK” Kim, Ben J. Woodcroft, Carmody K. McCalley Suzanne Hodgkins, Robert M. Jones, et al. “Microbial carbon cycling across a natural permafrost thaw gradient via biogeochemistry and metaproteomic-inferred microbial activity”. Presented at the American Geophysical Union , San Francisco, California, December 2012 SWESDemo:Test Page