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Christopher Penton

Christopher Penton

Assistant Professor, Faculty of Science and Mathematics, College of Integrative Sciences and Arts

crpenton@asu.edu

480-727-5738

College of Integrative Sciences and Arts
Arizona State University, Polytechnic campus
6073 S. Backus Mall
Mesa, AZ 85212

Titles

  • Senior Sustainability Scientist, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability
  • Assistant Professor, Faculty of Science and Mathematics, College of Integrative Sciences and Arts

Biography

Dr. Penton is a microbial ecologist interested in establishing linkages between microbial (bacterial and fungal) functional community structure and abundances with biogeochemical and plant disease processes. His research addresses bacterial and fungal functional guilds that impact ecosystem processes across spatial and temporal scales, from the local to the global. He focuses on developing an understanding of the linkages between microbial functional communities (catalysts) and the associated measurable process (products) such as CO2, CH4 or N2O production, especially in the context of global climate change. To accomplish this he utilizes next generation tools to measure microbial community composition and abundance combined with an understanding of the influence by scale-dependent factors (e.g. pH, plant composition, soil structure, precipitation) on shaping the microbial community. His research topics range from natural disease suppression of crop disease, changes in nitrogen cycling communities in the context of climate change, impacts of biochar amendment for bioenergy crop production, nitrogen fixation over spatial scales and nitrogen cycling in aquifer sediments impacted by land-use changes. He teaches courses in microbiology and applied microbial ecology.

Education

  • PhD, Microbial Ecology, Michigan State University, 2008
  • MSc, Wetland Biogeochemistry, University of Florida, 2004
  • BSc, Microbiology, University of Florida, 1998

Expertise

Journal Articles

In Press

Xue, C., C. R. Penton, Z. Shen, Q. Huang, I. Rong, R. Yunze and Q. Shen. Manipulating the banana rhizosphere microbiome for the rehabilitation of severe Panama disease incidence. Scientific Reports

Zhang, B., C. R. Penton, C. Xue, Q. Wang, T. Zheng and J. M. Tiedje. Evaluation of the Ion Torrent PGM for gene-targeted studies using amplicons of the nitrogenase gene, nifH. Applied and Environmental Microbiology DOI: 10.1128/AEM.00111-15. (link )

2015

Penton, C. R., D. St. Louis, A. Pham, J. R. Cole, L. Wu, E. A. Schuur, J. Zhou and J. M. Tiedje. 2015. Denitrifying and diazotrophic community responses to artificial warming in permafrost and tallgrass prairie soils. Frontiers in Microbiology: Terrestrial Microbiology 6:746. DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2015.00746. (link )

2014

Penton, C. R., J. L. Deenik, B. N. Popp, G. L. Bruland, P. Engstrom, J. Mueller, A. Worden and J. M. Tiedje. 2014. Assessing nitrogen transformations in a flooded agroecosystem using the isotope pairing technique and nitrogen functional gene abundances. Soil Science: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Soil Research 179(1):2-10. DOI: 10.1097/SS.0000000000000038. (link )

Penton, C. R., V. S. Gupta, J. M. Tiedje, S. M. Neate, K. Ophel-Keller, M. Gillings, P. Harvey, A. Pham and D. K. Roget. 2014. Fungal community structure in disease suppressive soils assessed by 28S LSU gene sequencing. PLOS One 9(4):e93893. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0093893. (link )

2013

Penton, C. R., J. L. Deenik, B. N. Popp, G. L. Bruland, P. Engstrom, D. St. Louis and J. Tiedje. 2013. Importance of sub-surface rhizosphere-mediated coupled nitrification-denitrification in a flooded agroecosystem in Hawaii. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 67:362-373. DOI: 10.1016/j.soilbio.2012.10.018. (link )

Sull, W. J., S. Asuming-Brempong, Q. Wang, D. M. Tourlousse, C. R. Penton, Y. Deng, J. L. Rodrigues, S. G. Adiku, J. W. Jones, J. Zhou, J. R. Cole and J. M. Tiedje. 2013. Tropical agricultural land management influences on soil microbial communities through its effect on soil organic carbon. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 65:33-38. DOI: 10.1016/j.soilbio.2013.05.007. (link )

Vital, M., C. R. Penton, Q. Wang, V. B. Young, D. A. Antonopoulos, M. L. Sogin, H. G. Morrison, L. Raffals, E. B. Chang, G. B. Huffnagle, T. M. Schmidt, J. R. Cole and J. M. Tiedje. 2013. A gene-targeted approach to investigate the intestinal butyrate-producing bacterial community. Microbiome 1(1):8. DOI: 10.1186/2049-2618-1-8. (link )

Presentations

2015

Gupta, V. S., C. R. Penton and J. M. Tiedje. 2015. Edaphic and plant associated factors regulate diazotroph diversity and function in Australian soils. Presentation at the BAGECO 13: 13th Symposium on Bacterial Genetics and Ecology, 14-18 June 2015, Milan, Italy. (link )

Penton, C. R. 2015. Natural disease suppression of Rhizoctonia solari AG8 in Australian cropping systems: Drivers of spatial heterogeneity. Presentation at the Nanjing Agricultural University, (invited), Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China.

Penton, C. R. 2015. Natural disease suppression of Rhizoctonia solari AG8 in Australian cropping systems: Drivers of spatial heterogeneity. Presentation at the Xinglong Tropical Botanical Garden Spice and Beverage Crop Research Institute of China, Tropical Agriculture Research, (Invited), Datang, Hainan Province, China.

Penton, C. R., J. R. Cole, L. Wu, E. A. Schuur, J. Zhou and J. M. Tiedje. 2015. Denitrifying and diazotrophic community responses to artificial warming in permafrost and tallgrass prairie soils. Presentation at the Genomic Science Contractors– Grantees Meeting XIII, 22-25 February 2015, Washington, DC. (link )

Yu, J., S. Crow, J. L. Deenik, L. Deem and C. R. Penton. 2015. The effect of biochar amendment on microbial community composition. Presentation at the ASM 2015: American Society for Microbiology 115th General Meeting, May 30-June 2, 2015, New Orleans, Louisiana. (link )

2014

Penton, C. R., J. Yu, J. M. Tiedje and V. S. Gupta. 2014. Soil sample size affects fungal and bacterial community structure and richness: New insights using high throughput sequencing. Presentation at the Grand Challenges: Great Solutions - ASA, CSSA, & SSA International Meeting, 2-5 November 2014, Long Beach, CA. (link )